America got a little bigger today. A federal judge granted 38 people citizenship in a naturalization ceremony this morning in Tyler. The Daughters of the American Revolution joined the group in song and presented our newest citizens with their first American flags.
Over the years, KLTV has attended several naturalization ceremonies.
And though the stories behind those gaining their citizenships are different every time, one thing is always the same - the men who stand in the back in those colorful uniforms.
KLTV 7's Molly Reuter takes us inside the Sons Of The American Revolution Color Guard.
"It's a very colorful outfit. We always get a lot of attention," said Steve Lee, SAR President.
For more than 40 years the Tyler chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution, or SAR, have been promoting patriotism, preserving history and educating the public.
It's a group of men who are able to trace their ancestry to someone who participated in the American Revolution.
"That's why we participate in things like the naturalization ceremony, because our organization represents everything that they have come here to enjoy," said Lawrence Ashburn.
Six years ago, Ashburn decided the SAR needed more publicity.
"This is very hot when you wear it."
And his answer was the Color Guard.
"When we go down to the square wearing these getups, people look around and say who are you, and we get a chance to tell them who we are," said Ashburn.
The naturalization ceremony is just one of several events the SAR Color Guard participates in throughout the year.
"I love the naturalization ceremonies. I mean it is such an honor to be able to participate in that. I mean you look out and see the smiling faces on everybody," said Steve Lee.
"It's just fun to get up there and show off, so to speak. Put on these costumes, you know, and you're big cheese," said Jack Ludwick, another SAR member.
It's easy to see these men enjoy what they are doing, and say most importantly they know they are spreading the heritage of our great nation.
The local chapter of the American Revolution has about 70 members. 12 of them participate in the Color Guard.