CHARLOTTE, N.C. — As celebrations of America's independence continued on July 4, one group honored the day in a different way. The Charlotte Museum of History hosted a naturalization ceremony where 15 immigrants became citizens.
Red, white, and blue filled the room during the ceremony on the most patriotic day of the year. Proud loved ones snapped pictures and clapped as people from 13 different countries were sworn into citizenship.
Acting Charlotte field office director for the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Victoria Moody, gave a speech during the event.
"I’m proud to welcome you as the newest generation of American citizens, as individuals who have made a commitment to this great nation,” Moody said.
The group stood from their seats, raised their right hands, and recited an oath to their country. Many faced adversities and worked hard to honor the stars and stripes.
That hard work is now paying off for new U.S. citizen Guadalupe Moore Reyes.
Moore Reyes told WCNC Charlotte that becoming a citizen was a "long time coming." She moved to the Charlotte area from Mexico with her husband 20 years ago for a job opportunity to teach Spanish.
Moore Reyes added that she thinks living in the states gives her more opportunities to work and be involved with her church.
Moore Reyes and the 12 others sworn in on July 4 smiled, cheered, and held up their official certificates that prove their citizenship. Moore Reyes said she is "very, very happy."
The Charlotte ceremony is just one of 140 happening across the country in the first week of July, where more than 6,600 will become U.S. citizens.