© 2024 Western New York Public Broadcasting Association

140 Lower Terrace
Buffalo, NY 14202

Mailing Address:
Horizons Plaza P.O. Box 1263
Buffalo, NY 14240-1263

Buffalo Toronto Public Media | Phone 716-845-7000
WBFO Newsroom | Phone: 716-845-7040
Your NPR Station
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

New U.S. citizens sworn in at Roosevelt Inaugural Site

Michael Mroziak, WBFO

Tuesday morning's heavy snow couldn't stop 27 people from completing a long journey to U.S. citizenship. That journey ended at the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site in Buffalo, where these began a new era in their lives as officially certified Americans.

They came from 17 nations throughout the globe, from as far away as Burma and from as near as Canada. After they were briefed on procedures for applying for passports and completing other critical documents, the candidates were shown a reenactment of Theodore Roosevelt taking the oath to become President of the United States upon the death of William McKinley in 1901.

"I think many of us take our citizenship for granted. These people do not take it for granted at all," said Stanton Hudson, executive director of the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site. "I think it's a great lesson in terms of civics, how important citizenship is, and not only the rights that come with citizenship but the responsibilities that all of us have as citizens of the United States of America."

The new citizens were told that voting is their greatest privilege and responsibility. Federal Magistrate Judge Leslie Foschio, who oversaw the ceremony, told the audience that this year's upcoming elections may be the most important in recent times.

Mohammed Rahman was among the 27 people sworn in as new US citizens. A native of Bangladesh, he first came to the US six years ago to seek a better life, and was treated for his illness.

"When I came here, they detected my cancer," said Rahman. "It was a wonderful time in the hospital. I never believed... they are so good."

Rahman received good news from his wife on his first day as a US citizen. According to him, she passed her civics exam, putting her on the path to one day taking the oath of citizenship and joining her husband as an American.

Michael Mroziak is an experienced, award-winning reporter whose career includes work in broadcast and print media. When he joined the WBFO news staff in April 2015, it was a return to both the radio station and to Horizons Plaza.
Related Content