News: Abraham-Lincoln wins lottery
FORT HUNTER LIGGETT, Calif. - For the past four years Claude Abraham-Lincoln has been living in the United States; however, he was born in Ghana, Africa in 1974. He lived in a small town called Tema. After graduating from college, Abraham was tired of working as a quality control officer in the Tema flour mills and wanted to go to America. He entered the visa lottery.
The Diversity Visa Lottery Program is a congressionally mandated program which makes available up to 55,000 diversity visas annually, drawn from random entries of people who meet strict eligibility requirements from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States.
He said he did not win on the first try or the second, but he did not let that stop him. He was determined to get to the U.S. He entered a third time and finally won.
Abraham lived in Pennsylvania with friends when he first came to America.
In Boston, Abraham got a job in one of the hotels in Boston where he works as a banquet supervisor.
The director of the hotel was over working the employees and treated them unfairly he said. Abraham said they were supposed to work three until eleven, but in most cases it would be 3 p.m. until 3 a.m. Some workers quit, but most could not just quit. They started talking to the union for the hotel. They wanted to work the hours they were supposed to and receive benefits. They were under staffed and under paid.
During the tug of war with the union Abraham decided to join the Army at 36 years old. His recruiter did not tell him about the requirements for basic training he said. He was shipped to training Jan. 5, 2009.
“Those days were terrible.” On the first day I could only do five sit-ups.
The drill sergeants were yelling and telling him he had to push himself. He knew he had to stay motivated and do what he had to do in order to make it through training. Most the other soldiers were younger than he was and could do the required push-ups, sit-ups and run. He did not let this defeat him. He became even more determined to pass the PT test. On the last PT Test before graduating from basic training Abraham did over 60 push-ups and sit-ups. This was one of the biggest accomplishments of his life. He started out not even coming close to passing the PT test, but now can almost max each event.
Abraham is an 88N, transportation management coordinator, assigned to 822nd Movement Control Team from Boston, Mass. Abraham had the same motivation when he went back to work at that hotel in Boston, but he also gained courage. He had the courage to stand up to the director and fight for their rights. He and his workers came together and he filed a grievance. The workers started calling Abraham, “Abraham-Lincoln.”
In September 2010, beside 5,000 other people in Fenway Park in Boston, Abraham-Lincoln was sworn in as an American citizen.
Part of the eligibility requirements to enter the lottery is education or work experience in Abraham-Lincoln’s case he had both, but he said he could not have done this by himself. He said God has truly blessed him. His parents now live in Europe and at one time Abraham-Lincoln was going to go live with them. His father wanted him to live with them because he said “Abraham” did not know anyone in the U.S. Abraham-Lincoln said I will get to know someone.
Now Abraham-Lincoln knows a lot of people who not only live in America, but also fight for its freedom.
Date Posted:06.21.2011 14:12
Location:FORT HUNTER LIGGETT, CA, US
- Rolling through adversity
- Visit from the senior non-commissioned officer of the US Armed Forces
- Peaceful protest
- Operations of the OpFor