News>Air Guard recruit becomes U.S. citizen, heads to basic training
Vivian Gutierrez de Pineres takes the Oath of Allegiance to the United States July 20 in Tucson, Ariz., making her a naturalized citizen. Gutierrez, originally from Colombia, reports to Air Force Basic Training July 24. She will return to the Arizona Air National Guard’s 162nd Fighter Wing in December where she will serve her new country as a health services manager. (U.S. Air Force photo/Maj. Gabe Johnson)
Vivian Gutierrez de Pineres shows her husband, Army Capt. Tim Cullers, her certificate of U.S. citizenship at a naturalization ceremony at the U.S. District Court in Tucson, Ariz., July 20. Gutierrez will serve her new country as a member of the Arizona Air National Guard. She reports to Air Force Basic Training July 24. (U.S. Air Force photo/Maj. Gabe Johnson)
by Maj. Gabe Johnson
162nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs
7/20/2012 - TUCSON, Ariz. -- Fifty-three new American citizens took the Oath of Allegiance to the United States July 20 at the U.S. District Court here each looking forward to the duties of citizenship including one new American among the proud group ready to assume the duties of an Airman.
Vivian Gutierrez de Pineres, originally from Bogota, Colombia, became a naturalized U.S. citizen only four days before reporting to Air Force Basic Training at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas, July 24.
She enlisted in the Arizona Air National Guard's 162nd Fighter Wing in February to serve as a health services manager. While preparing her for the rigors of basic training, the wing helped her apply for citizenship.
"I feel so much appreciation," said Gutierrez. "I feel so thankful to the Arizona Air Guard. They have opened their doors to me and they helped me prepare my citizenship application making today possible."
Gutierrez said she didn't expect to become a citizen when she moved to the U.S. in 2006 to help manage her family's business in Miami. However, after meeting and marrying her husband, an American Soldier, her perspective changed.
"For me it became important to become a citizen," said Gutierrez, whose husband is an intelligence officer at Fort Huachuca, Ariz. She volunteers there to assist other Army spouses during deployments. "I have always been interested in helping my community and if this is my new country I need to do the same here."
"I'm very proud of her," said Capt. Tim Cullers, Gutierrez' husband. "She stuck it out. It wasn't always easy. We went through the whole process of residency and now citizenship. It's worth it."
Cullers said he's also proud of his wife's desire to serve in the Air Guard.
"She's progressing as an individual. She likes to be a member of a professional organization. It also helps us come together as a family because it gives us goals to work towards together."
"I always imagined I would get married on the 4th of July," said Cullers. "We didn't get married on July 4, but we did meet on a 4th of July. Today she's an American citizen and together we're a patriotic family."
7/20/2012 5:57:48 PM ET It is a pleasure having Vivian Gutierrez De Pineres in Student Flight. We wish her well in her career.