ST. LOUIS - U.S. Federal Judge Rodney Sippel conducted a naturalization ceremony at the Old Courthouse in downtown St. Louis on Tuesday, welcoming 49 immigrants from 23 different countries who became U.S. citizens.
Bob Plager, who was born in Kirkland Lake, Ont. but has become a U.S. citizen himself, was in attendance as the guest speaker.
"Your dreams can happen, you just have to work hard," Plager told the immigrants. "It was a dream for me, it was a dream for these players that get to come here. And let me tell you something, it's the making of dreams in hockey when you do come to St. Louis and get to hoist the Stanley Cup... Your dreams can come true as mine have. Welcome to the United States, and good luck."
After Plager's speech, a microphone was passed around to allow all 49 citizens to state their name, where they're from, how long they have been in the United States, their profession and what becoming a citizen means to them.
Following the ceremony, all were presented with their Certificates of Citizenship and given a chance to meet Plager.