100 new U.S. citizens take oath of allegiance in Connecticut - WFSB 3 Connecticut

100 new U.S. citizens take oath of allegiance in Connecticut

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100 new U.S. citizens take oath of allegiance in Connecticut (WFSB) 100 new U.S. citizens take oath of allegiance in Connecticut (WFSB)
BRANFORD, CT (WFSB) -

The United States has 100 new citizens, who now reside in Connecticut.

On Friday, the whole group took the oath of allegiance at Branford High School, which was the first time a ceremony of its kind has been done at a high school in the state.

The group came to the high school from the far reaches of the globe, but after months of work, and years of preparation, they all left the auditorium as United States citizens.

"I love it, I love being here. It’s just such a beautiful country. It’s so diverse,” said Neil Fitzpatrick, who came to the United States from Ireland 29 years ago, and said though the timing seems odd, it was actually perfect.

"I arrived here in September of 1986, when the Mets won the World Series. I’ve been a Mets fan ever since. I think it's a good omen and they're going to win it all because I just got my citizenship,” Fitzpatrick said.

He and 99 others all had to tackle paperwork, pay fees, complete an interview, and take a test that many born American citizens would find difficult.

"They have to put forth this effort. This is beyond their work day. So they come to attend our classes to make a better life for themselves and their families and become a true part of our community,” said Maya Shofield, a citizenship teacher.

Branford Superintendent of Schools Hamlet Hernandez said he remembers when his own parents became citizens after escaping Cuba nearly 50 years ago.

"It was a very magical moment for my family, it was joyous and life changing,” Hernandez said.

Senator Richard Blumenthal said the location for the ceremony was fitting.

"We’re not only a nation of immigrants, but we do right by them by providing the education that enables them to give back to this country,” Blumenthal said.

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