November 2, 2018

MARSHALL — America gained 39 new citizens Thursday when Marshall’s U.S. District Judge Rodney Gilstrap administered the oath of allegiance to the United States in a special naturalization ceremony.

“Welcome to citizenship in the greatest country ever to exist on this planet. This is a day that you will always remember,” Gilstrap told the new citizens who hailed from 12 countries.

New American Luisa Reyes was beaming after the ceremony. “It feels so good,” she said. Reyes, who is a native of Mexico and lives in Tyler, said she’s always felt a part of America because she gave birth to her children here and also wed here. Now, “I’ve made it official,” she said. Reyes and her daughter, Ria Cardona, who came to witness the ceremony, said they are most excited about Reyes’ right to vote. “I’m very proud of her,” Cardona said. “She’s doing her civic duty.”

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