LOS ANGELES, Calif. (FOX 11) - As over 10,000 people packed the West Hall of the Los Angeles Convention Center there was, not only a sense of excitement, but a feeling of expectation. For years, those assembled here had studied and prepared to become U.S. citizens and their day had finally come.
For every person ready to take their oath there was a story.
Let's start with Hong Ing. She's 103. Ing came to America from Cambodia. She has 30-grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
A family member says she always dreamed to coming to the U.S., "because she wished to live in a peaceful country...because at that time they lived in Cambodia and it was just a war."
In Cambodian, she told FOX 11 News, "It's so exciting and happy."
Great granddaughter Melissa Tea told us, "It's amazing. She's finally accomplished one of her dreams." Her sister Melinda Tea said, "I'm very proud of her of being this age and becoming an American citizen at this time in her age."
As they took their pledge of allegiance some like 28-year-old Arezou Motamedi from Iran is fulfilling her dream. She's an athlete...a competitive Kayaker.
She says, "As a kid I always dreamed to come to the United States...get better at kayaking and because I think...the United States is the land of opportunity."
In this group there were over 10,000 people representing about 120 different countries that were naturalized. To say, when they came out they were excited, that would be an understatement.
Like Anis Chandani, a singer/musician from India told us, "This country gives us so much fortune and so much of everything."
And, now he, and the others, are now American citizens.
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