Richmond welcomes 46 new Americans in with Citizenship Ceremony

Published: Jul. 4, 2022 at 6:25 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) -On the day Americans celebrate the birth of the United States, 46 new American citizens from 28 different countries celebrated the birth of their American journey by taking the oath of citizenship at the Virginia Museum of History and Culture.

Each say they left their homes under different circumstances, but the reason they came to the US is the same, for the freedoms and opportunities the county has to offer.

“I’ve been in the united states for 7 years so becoming a U.S. citizen is a great achievement for me and my family,” said Diana Quezada from Ecuador.

“I’ve been looking forward to this as long as I could remember,” said Ariana Zoldork from Peru.

To really understand the emotions behind this day, you have to know the backstories. Ariana Zoldork says her family brought her to the U.S. when she was 4 years old.

She says the process to become a citizen was challenging.

“When I was 14 I got DACA then I married my husband who I met in high school so then I was able to do my green card through that then I had to wait 3 years for my citizenship,” said Zoldork.

But through every obstacle, Ariana says she never lost sight of the dream.

“So much emotion going through, it’s been my parents’ dream for this moment. It’s been 18 years and I just have no words for this today,” said Zoldork.

Diana Quezada has been in living in the United States for the last 7 years.

She says in Ecuador there wasn’t much stability and by coming to the states she was able to give her family a fresh start.

Graduating from college and started her own tutoring business for others coming from other countries.

“I help them do homework, study for tests, and all that,” said Quezada.

In the end, both Arianza and Diana say it was well worth all the work and this is only the beginning.

“I hope to graduate in December, I go to VCU and I want to vote,” said Zoldork.

“Next step for me is to help my parents to start their lives here so we can come together and live here in the United States,” said Quezada.

So congratulations to both Zoldork and Quezada, and all of the other 44 citizens.

Copyright 2022 WWBT. All rights reserved.

Send it to 12 here.

Want NBC12’s top stories in your inbox each morning? Subscribe here.