Twenty-four active duty U.S. service members were recently naturalized as American citizens by President Barack Obama at the White House.
"It is a great honor to serve as your commander in chief and it is my greatest pleasure to be among the first to greet you as a fellow American," Obama said following the oath of citizenship.
The men and women represented 12 countries. Obama told them that being a new citizen comes with responsibilities.
"Citizenship is not just a collection of rights, but it is also a set of responsibilities," he said. "Like so many others, these men and women met their responsibilities, they have earned their citizenship."
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said their willingness to serve the United States even before they were citizens is a great act of patriotism.
"It takes a very special individual to serve and defend a nation that is not yet your own, but that is what each of you are doing. That is testimony to your strong sense of patriotism," she said.
Source: United States Department of Defense