By Mark Abrams
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — On the day the government shutdown ended, a group of new citizens swore an oath of allegiance to the United States of America during naturalization ceremonies in the National Constitution Center, on Independence Mall.
Forty-seven applicants from 32 countries across the globe raised their hands and recited in unison their allegiance to a new land.
Kalliopi Fotiou (below) was born in Athens, Greece, but now calls Upper Chichester, Delaware County, home. She says she came here nearly 14 years ago for a visit and knew she wanted to make America her home.
And, she says, her family back in Greece supported her.
“Oh, they are very happy for me. They say I have been here a long time and I should be.”
Fotiou says actually she met and fell in love with a man and married him but he passed away two years into the marriage. She stayed here in the Philadelphia area and was determined to work the path to citizenship.
She says she is proud to finally become an American and loves living in what she calls “this land of opportunity.”