Elgin recognizes new U.S. citizens (El Conquistador)

First article published in a bilingual newspaper, El Conquistador. Friday, June 23, 2006. Review links below for full article clipping and more.

by Tracy Ibarra

ELGIN – Juan Castro, along with 30 other new U.S. Citizens, were recognized June 14 at the seventh Annual Elgin Recognition Program for New U.S. citizens that was held during a city council meeting.

The event, which had the Elgin Chambers packed with approximately 200, was organized by the Elgin New Citizens Recognition Commission, which includes founder Jerry Turnquist, Elgin Community College, City of Elgin Mayor Ed Shock, Elgin’s City Council, and citizens at large.

Citizenship class instructor at Elgin Community College Richard Reed gave a brief overview of the process the students have to go through in order to apply for citizenship. “These students really want to be citizens, so they’re willing to put the time and effort,” said Reed. Castro, who became a U.S. citizen in January, spoke at the recognition about his arrival to the United States when he was 18 years old from Guerrero, Mexico, about his wife and three kids, and his love for the United States.

“I love this country because it give me the opportunity for a better life and not just for me but for my family as well. I am proud to be an American citizen.” Castro said.

Abigail Martinez, a Huntley resident, was very happy for her friend Rosa Sanborn, another new U.S. citizen acknowledged at the recognition. “I’m excited for her because she’s been waiting for three years and I know she wants to live in this country for the rest of her life, so that she can have better opportunities,” Martinez said.

The event closed with the Elgin Choral Union Outreach Ensemble singing patriotic songs, including the National Anthem.

A reception, hosted by State Representative Ruth Munson (R-Elgin) and Senator J. Rauschenberger (R-Elgin), followed the ceremony.

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