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USCIS Proudly Flies the Flag for a Naturalized Service Member

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Outstanding customer service is what USCIS always strives for - but on Friday, May 11, the New York District Office had the opportunity to go above and beyond for a customer - or, actually, a former customer. Lt. Col. Natalie Giscombe, originally from Panama, naturalized in New York in 1986. After a successful 22-year career as a Nurse in the U.S Air Force, Lt. Col. Giscombe was eager to take part in a military retirement tradition of sending an American flag to the first and last base where she served and asking for it to be flown in her honor. Lt. Col. Giscombe had one additional request - because her naturalization was such a meaningful event in her life. She wanted her flag to make a stop in New York to fly over the office where she naturalized 26 years earlier.

Above: The American flag flies at USCIS District Office in Lower Manhattan in honor of naturalized U.S. citizen and retiring Air Force Lieutenant Colonel, Natalie Giscombe.

Above:  The American flag flies at USCIS District Office in Lower Manhattan in honor of naturalized U.S. citizen and retiring Air Force Lieutenant Colonel, Natalie Giscombe.

New York District Director Andrea Quarantillo and her staff were happy to oblige this unusual request - a first for the district. Director Quarantillo explained, "At USCIS-NY we know that so many of the thousands of people who naturalize here each year will go on to accomplish great things in the service of their new nation, but we so rarely hear from them again or have the opportunity to thank them.  We were glad to receive Lt. Col. Giscombe’s request and learn how fully she has lived the commitment to citizenship she made in our office two decades ago."


Above: The mother and son of Lt. Col. Giscombe, Margarita Farnum-Watson and Stephon Giscombe (center), surrounded by USCIS-NY military reservists and veterans and NY District Director Andrea Quarantillo (far left).
Above:  The mother and son of Lt. Col. Giscombe, Margarita Farnum-Watson and Stephon Giscombe (center), surrounded by USCIS-NY military reservists and veterans and NY District Director Andrea Quarantillo (far left).

Lt. Col. Giscombe was unable to attend the flag-raising because she is still serving as Chief Nurse at Edwards Air Force Base, but she was deeply grateful for the tribute. Her mother, Margarita Farnum-Watson, and her son, Stephon Giscombe, were on hand for the ceremony.

Also in attendance were more than 20 employees of the New York District office who are themselves retired military or reservists. Representing all five branches of the military, they gathered to pay tribute. This event also provided an opportunity for the office to extend gratitude to the veterans and military reservists on staff. District Director Quarantillo remarked to the employees “you embody true patriotism and love of country. Thank you for your past and continued service.”