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Norman music students welcome new citizens during naturalization ceremony

Friday, 43 people took the Oath of Allegiance, becoming American citizens at a naturalization ceremony at the Oklahoma City federal courthouse. They were greeted with special performances by students at the Norman School for Strings.
by Matt Dinger Modified: May 31, 2014 at 10:00 am •  Published: May 31, 2014

Dozens of new United States citizens were welcomed by a group of youth violinists Friday during their naturalization ceremony at the Oklahoma City federal courthouse.

Before the ceremony, the applicants and audience were treated to a half-hour of various tunes performed by 15 students ages 5 to 14 from the Norman School for Strings.

The students also performed four songs during the ceremony, beginning with “The Star Spangled Banner” after the court was opened by Chief Judge Vicki Miles-LaGrange.

The 43 new citizens were introduced by their countries of origin that included: Belarus, Burma, Cambodia, Cameroon, China, Croatia, Germany, India, Iran, Japan, Kazakhstan, Laos, Mexico, Nepal, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, Russia, the United Kingdom and Vietnam.

The applicants were sworn in with the Oath of Allegiance led by new federal Court Clerk Carmelita Reeder Shinn, and followed by a video welcome by President Barack Obama.

The students then performed “America the Beautiful” before the judge addressed the new citizens.

“We know America is a better America after each naturalization ceremony,” Miles-LaGrange said. “America will become even better because you were naturalized today.”

Speaker celebrates immigrants

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by Matt Dinger
Court Reporter
Matt Dinger was born and raised in Oklahoma City. He has worked in OPUBCO's News and Information Center since 2006, and has been assigned to the breaking news desk since its formation in fall 2008. He specializes in crime and police reporting.
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