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PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN: U.S. citizenship earned, not birthed

November 6, 2013

Pat Gunter (right) became a U.S. citizen in October after almost a 10-year process. She is pictured on the day of her citizenship ceremony, which was held in South Bend, as the presiding judge presents her with a certificate. Photo contributed

COLUMBIA CITY — Veterans Day will have a greater significance for Pat Gunter and her family.

Gunter works at Smith & Sons Funeral Home in Columbia City and lives in Fort Wayne with her husband John.

Together with their daughter Kayleigh, the family earned their U.S. citizenship recently.

“It took years to get here,” Gunter said. “We wanted to complete the process before our daughter’s wedding. We started working on our citizenship as a family and we wanted to finish it that way as well.”

With just two weeks before the wedding, the Gunter family traveled to South Bend, stood before the judge and were sworn as citizens.

“It’s a moving ceremony,” Gunter said. “There is a pride that comes over you when you are standing there holding your flag and saying the oath. It is somewhat emotional.”

Gunter is originally from Wales and her husband is from England. The couple moved to Detriot in 1997 because of job opportunities.

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