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Photo: International Exchange Program - USNSCC

Photo: International Exchange Program - USNSCC

On September 11, 2002 the US Citizenship and Immigration Service in Vermont decided that it was fitting to set aside this date every year to swear in new citizens to this country. On September 11, 2001 the country fused together as it had not in a good long time. People came from around the country (and also the world) to help those in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania that needed assistance. We citizens did what any family would do in a crisis, swarm in and take over – help where help was needed, do what needed to be done, even if it meant only to share the tears and offer shoulders to cry upon. There was a strong sense of pride in being American, a regeneration of the spirit that formed our country many, many years ago. So fitting then, that each day on the anniversary of one of this country’s greatest tragedies as a nation, we should welcome with open arms those that share our spirit and long to stand as one with us.

We have a dear friend, who a few years ago, studied hard and completed all of the paperwork necessary to become a citizen. It was a great celebration in our family and with our friends, for he is a great guy and a wonderful addition to our country. I know how difficult it is to take the time to make that commitment and how much it means to those that do it.

Today, in Montpelier, United States Circuit Court Judge Hall presided over the 8th such commemorative 9/11 ceremony, swearing in 91 immigrants from 37 countries. As of this afternoon each of these 91 can proudly call themselves “Americans”.

Congratulations to each and every one of you.

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