Vietnam veteran battling brain cancer wants to become U.S. citizen

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LONGMONT, Colo. – Werner Trei is accustomed to being on a man on a mission.

This time around, the decorated Vietnam War veteran is on a mission to gain U.S. citizenship.

The 71-year-old said his family moved from Germany to Lincoln, Nebraska, when he was just 2 years old.

After he graduated from high school, he was drafted into the Vietnam War, defending a country in which he could not vote and returning home with three Bronze Stars.

“Every man that ever went out with me I brought back. Never lost a man. I can be proud of that,” Trei said.

He has qualified for green-card status over the years and was under the impression that once he served in the Army, he would gain citizenship.

But it never happened.

Now. Trei has brain cancer and is in hospice care. His caregivers at The Peaks Care Center in Longmont are reaching out to Gov. Jared Polis and Sen. Cory Gardner to help him finally become a citizen.

When asked what his favorite part about America was, Trei’s answer was simple.

“Freedom.”

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