Pravin Singh Bhakuni became a U.S. citizen Friday and on Sunday he'll be activated with his Navy Reserve unit to help in "Operation Desert Storm."
Bhakuni, 21, a native of India who has lived in the United States for 17 years, was not scheduled to officially become a U.S. citizen until Feb. 5. But when word came that his Navy Reserve unit was being activated, government officials speeded up his citizenship process. He was sworn in as a citizen Friday."It doesn't feel any different because I feel like I've been more of an American than an Indian for the past 17 years," said Bhakuni, a University of Akron junior majoring in computer science.
His parents sent him to the United States at the age of 4 to live with his aunt and uncle, who have since adopted him.
Bhakuni said his natural parents wanted him to have the opportunities America could offer. He said he joined the Navy Reserve to give something back to the country while also taking advantage of the educational benefits the military had to offer.