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Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

Citizen 'Mario'

Sunday, March 1, 2009

* Area restaurant owner gains citizenship

The United States has a new naturalized citizen and he's proud to call Brazil home.

"I love this town," Mauro "Mario" Martinez told The Brazil Times. "Brazil is a nice place to raise a family. The people here have been very good to me and my family."

Clay County Council Member Brian Wyndham congratulates Mauro "Mario" Martinez on recently being sworn in as a naturalized citizen of the United States.
Once he decided to open his own restaurant, Martinez came to the Brazil area 10 years ago with his wife Margeritta and their children.

"I was looking for places to open a restaurant, so I came to Brazil," Martinez, the owner of Mario Bros. Restaurant and Double N Dinner, said. "It's a big enough city that travelers going through the area recognize Brazil and remember they were here."

A co-owner of a Greencastle restaurant and owner of restaurants in Rockville and Terre Haute, Martinez has recently purchased and is currently renovating the building left vacant after Lucio's Mexican Cuisine closed.

"It's a busy life," he said. "I make sure to take time for my family."

Work ethics and the drive to succeed were instilled in Martinez by his parents when he was a small child on the family farm.

"(As a young boy,) I remember selling tomatoes grown by my father at the local market," he said. "I believe Brazil has a lot of potential to be a really nice town, but everybody has to work together as a group. Everyone can have success, you just have to work to get it. Look for the opportunity and then go get it."

Becoming a United States citizen was an opportunity Martinez couldn't pass up.

"America is the land of opportunity," Martinez said.

The process for a person from a foreign country to become a U.S. citizen is called naturalization. It consists of three steps, filing an application, taking a naturalization examination and participating in an Oath Ceremony.

Although the amount of time varies for each person, for many it can take more than five years to complete all the required education needed just to pass the test.

"It's hard for many people," Martinez said. "You have to learn so much to pass the 100 questions on the test. You have to learn the whole history of the U.S."

During the approximately two years he studied before taking his test, Martinez said he enjoyed learning history, but admitted to having some trouble learning the grammar part of English. However, he had some help from a tutor, a special fifth-grader at Forest Park Elementary.

"At night after work, I'd study with my daughter," he said. "I would read something and she would ask me questions. I really enjoyed learning about the bill of rights and my rights to freedom of speech as a citizen."

At the Oath Ceremony on Feb. 19, Martinez said he learned how important freedom of speech is in an Indianapolis courtroom.

"A baby was crying before the ceremony and the judge said, 'Let him cry. This is America and he's allowed an opinion. Everyone is allowed to have their say. He will know when to be quiet,'" Martinez said. "When the ceremony started, the judge was right. The baby was quiet."

Martinez wasn't nervous about the ceremony.

"I was excited, comfortable," he said. "I've been in America for 20 years, but I really feel at home now."

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Congratulations Mauro!

-- Posted by Localguy1972 on Sun, Mar 1, 2009, at 10:10 PM

Congratulations Mauro! Your restaurant is the nicest place in town. Your food is great, and I am very proud of the fact that you continue to put your profits back into your business to make it even better. You have really renovated Mauro Bros and made the whole block look fantastic. The addition of the Patio will be much loved this summer. I'm very proud to call you a fellow American, and I wish you much more success!

-- Posted by olmedic on Sun, Mar 1, 2009, at 11:42 PM

Shows how determination and a good work ethic is what makes one realize the American Dream. Mr. Martinez's is so like so many of our parents' and grandparents' stories who came here from other countries. Two of my grandparents immigrated through Ellis Island in 1912 and 1914 to achieve that same dream. Others came earlier and landed in Plimoth when we were just becoming a colony.

Unoit: Yes we are entitled to our opinions in the US. But should we make them if they are hurtful, disrespectful, or demeaning? could it be that yours was and someone else had to act as your conscience? That is what America is about as well. Respecting and appreciating the varied cultures and traditions that the country contains and remembering that unless we were part of the population who walked across the Bering Strait so many centuries ago, the rest of us are relatively short term immigrants as well; bringing with us so many varied customs that we still practice vestiges of within pockets of our society and in some of our families today. I think sometimes as we get a few generations away from our immigrated family members we forget that we aren't as homogeneous as we might think we are. Instead of one big "melting pot", I like to think of us more as a huge salad bowl so we don't forget our ancestral history and the richness of our varied cultures of origin. I am proud to be an American as compared to so many other countries it grants us so many freedoms and opportunities, but I still love the "special-ness" of the traditions that are passed down from our family's country of origin.

¡Bienvenidos Mario! Welcome!

-- Posted by Jenny Moore on Mon, Mar 2, 2009, at 7:41 AM


-- Posted by petmonster on Mon, Mar 2, 2009, at 9:34 AM

-- Posted by aminor on Mon, Mar 2, 2009, at 11:24 AM

Congratulation Mario! We are honored to have you here in Brazil and may your work ethic be an example to all the youth in our town and county. Keep up the great job!

-- Posted by karenmeister on Mon, Mar 2, 2009, at 12:30 PM

olmedic said it:"Your restaurant is the nicest place in town.". We need more citizens like this! It is wonderful to see a business thrive in such hard times, and beautify as well. I wish other businesses used as much charactor and willingness to do the same. Mario deserves a businessman of the year award for his accomplishments.

"Congratulations" on a much deserved citizenship!

-- Posted by rooster1 on Mon, Mar 2, 2009, at 12:48 PM

Way to go! This has been the best thing to happen to Brazil in many years!

-- Posted by maggiegirl on Mon, Mar 2, 2009, at 2:23 PM

Congratulatin Mauro My Family and i all wish you the best

-- Posted by louisaann on Mon, Mar 2, 2009, at 3:16 PM

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