Huntsville woman becomes naturalized citizen at 86, thanks friends

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — The United States has a long history of welcoming immigrants from around the world. Over the past decade, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services have naturalized more than 7.3 million citizens.

Earlier this year, Griselda Agosti is one of 40% of immigrants to Alabama to become a naturalized U.S. citizen. Born and raised in Argentina, she first arrived in New York in 1961 after learning English at her university in Buenos Aires.

However, it wasn’t until the age of 86 that she was able to realize her American dream with the help of her fellow ‘Renegades’, the nickname for a group of senior friends at Artisan Twickenham Square Apartments. near downtown Huntsville.

“The Renegades are a melting pot of individuals with a few minorities and several individuals from all over,” friend Sandra McGruder told News 19. “She told us she always wanted to be a citizen of the United States. is always striving (sic) for this.

“In the 40s and 50s I saw a lot of movies, American movies. I fell in love with this country, that’s why I came. I’m still in love with this country,” Agosti said.

Her marriage forced her to return to her hometown of Buenos Aires, Argentina. But with his adult son now a local firefighter, Agosti called Rocket City home for nearly a decade.

“Huntsville is a very nice place. It’s not as expensive as California. The people are very nice and I’m very happy,” Agosti said.

Like her friend, McGruder couldn’t be prouder: “She wouldn’t take (the citizenship test) in Spanish. She took it in English. She’s just an inspiration.

“(I’m very proud. Very happy,” Agosti said. “And I’m still crying. But not to cry because I was sad, but because I was very happy.

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