Indiana welcomes 101 new American citizens - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

Indiana welcomes 101 new American citizens

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INDIANAPOLIS -

On the eve of Independence Day, 101 people celebrated a new beginning as they officially became American citizens.

Sprinkles Thursday morning couldn't rain on the pride and patriotism on the lawn of Indiana's only U.S. President at the Benjamin Harrison home.

"I'm from Macau, it is a Portuguese Colony," said Sau Hou Chang.

She came to study 14 years ago and never left. She's now a professor at IU Southeast.

"There are more opportunities here. If you dream it and work hard you can get it," she said.

That word - opportunity - is echoed among the crowd.

"About 12 years ago, Kraft sent us over a three-year assignment and we never went back," said Chris Trainor from the United Kingdom.

That journey brought Chris Trainor to head up the Batesville Casket Company.

"We've had three children all born here who are us citizens with American accents, so they think we talk strange," his wife Rachel laughed.

For others, fear drove people from their native land.

"If you were walking around the road, you have fear and are scared of something is going to explode or someone is going to shoot you, but here it is very peaceful," said Hekmatulla Khan from Afghanistan.

"The ability to walk out of your house and come back and know that your kid will be safe, your wife will be safe, your property will be safe, that's freedom," said Beffon Nyamosi from Kenya.

That's one reason why Nyamosi came to America five years ago; his daughter is another.

"Here is a better future for my daughter. I see my daughter advancing and going places over here," he said.

And as the immigration issue continues to heat up, they hope immigration will be allowed for generations to come.

"America is a country of immigrants. The journey I'm making right now for my daughter is the same journey your grandfather, your forefathers made for you," Nyamosi said.

"The States is a country that's been built on a mix of people over the years, so I think the foundation of that is a very eclectic mix of people and that's what makes america great. People who were born here probably don't realize what a wonderful country that they live in each day," Chris Trainor said.

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