By Sgt. Sidnie Smith | 14th Public Affairs Detachment
FORT CARSON, Colo. — The Fort Carson Army Community Service (ACS) held a naturalization ceremony Sept. 20, 2019, with eight people officially becoming U.S. citizens.
The new citizens came from seven countries: China, Iraq, Kenya, Kirgizstan, Russia, South Korea and Thailand.
The six Soldiers and two Family members were surrounded by Family, friends and their units during the ceremony.
Sgt. 1st Class Judith Beltowski, an Attack Helicopter Repairer assigned to 6th Attack Reconnaissance Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Combat Aviation Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, came to the ceremony in support of her Soldier, Pfc. Beatrice Kungu.
“It just makes me so proud,” said Beltowski. “I love that the strength of the military is our diversity, just as the strength of our country is our diversity.
To serve in the military without getting the full rights of citizenship, the full opportunity to really participate in that prosperity, just shows how selfless they are. It’s just amazing.”
After the ceremony, the new U.S. citizens were given a chance to speak. Pfc. Visarut Niamnet, a medical logistic specialist with 418th Medical Logistics Company, 627th Hospital Center, expressed his gratitude and the day’s importance to him.
“Thank you all so much,” Niamnet said with tears in his eyes and his voice cracking with emotion. “This means so much to me. It’s been a long time coming.”
According to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, in fiscal 2018, more than 756,000 people were naturalized; 4,135 of which were service members.
Spc. Amjed Al Saadi, a wheeled vehicle mechanic assigned to 4th Brigade Support Battalion, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 4th Inf. Div., said he started his citizenship process in 2017, but had issues and had to restart the process. It didn’t deter him from wanting to become a U.S. citizen.
“I am so happy now to have my citizenship finally,” Al Saadi said.
The ACS has had over 100 Soldiers and Family members naturalized at ceremonies this year.