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Last updateFri, 23 Feb 2018 12am







    Thursday, February 22, 2018-1:32:26P.M.






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22 new US citizens sworn in

TWENTY-TWO individuals from seven different countries took the oath of allegiance as American citizens in federal court on Wednesday, Valentine’s Day.

The naturalization ceremony was conducted by District Court for the NMI Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona for immigrants from Japan, South Korea, China, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Syria and Thailand.

The 22 new U.S. citizens are Corazon P. Ada, Olympio M. Alberio, Gerald C. Aniciete, Marites A. Aurelio, Sharmaine Mae A. Aurelio, Pebbles Basilgo, Areerat T. Camacho, Jeannette L. Camacho, Delia N. Castro, Mario K. Espeleta, June Bianca L. Frink, Hannah R. Jardinez, Aldrin T. Jovelo, Jung Ja Seo Jun, Jun Kitaoka, Garabed O Mirzoian, Juliana D. Nekaifes, Xiajun Ning, Bok Sun Park, Milagros P. Pellegrino, Leonardo N. Primo and Priyantha S. Wijayagunaratne.

The new U.S. citizens pose with District Court for the NMI Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona, Commonwealth Utilities Corp. legal counsel James S. Sirok, and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services immigration officer Teresa Murrieta.  Photo by Bryan Manabat

As the guest speaker on this special occasion, Commonwealth Utilities Corp. legal counsel, James S. Sirok encouraged the new Americans to tell their own story.

“Each of you has a story that inspires you to make a new life as a citizen in the United States,” he said. “Since the beginning, the U.S. has been enriched by its immigrants, so hold onto the treasures of your past.”

Sirok said “the qualities of your inheritance define who you are. And it should be shared with your community here and passed on to your children and their children. Practice whatever faith you believe in and respect the right of others to do the same. By sharing your background and experiences with your fellow citizens and living a good life, you will make our country better, stronger and richer.”

Sirok said his grandfather came from Poland while his grandmother hailed from Hungary. In the U.S., they settled in a small manufacturing town in Indiana.

“Citizenship is not like getting a driver’s license, or changing apartments, or putting on a new set of clothes,” he added. “We Americans are bound together as a family, united not by blood types, but by common ideas, a common language, and a common history. That common history is now yours.”

He wished the new citizens success, and said he hoped that “you will measure your own success not in terms of how much property you own, but according to how you preserve and share the American dream.”