ANSON, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Walking into Tipton’s Old Anson Diner is like stepping into a U.S. history museum. Owner Micheal Tipton comes from a family with strong military ties. As a Navy veteran, he uses his diner to display historical photos he received from his family or other local families who served.

In the back of the diner, you can find Tipton chatting with Samantha Rodriguez who works at the restaurant as a server. While working, Rodriguez casually mentioned she was studying for her U.S. citizenship exam. After living in Texas for years, she decided to take the next step in becoming a citizen. Tipton offered to help her study in a heartbeat.

“I love history and I love politics so I said, ‘I’ll help you.’ She could teach me a bit of Spanish in between,” Tipton explained.

When Tipton and Rodriguez began studying, he quickly realized she has been studying for a while and has become a bit of a history expert.

“So many of our kids don’t even like history and they’re forced to learn it through immigration because they have to answer those questions right and she answered some that I didn’t know,” added Tipton.

After months of studying, Rodriguez officially became a U.S. citizen and took her oath. She shared that the first thing she did as an American is register to vote.

“It’s like you were born again, you know, like you just feel like, ‘aah this is my country now’ like you get to be pretty much listened to,” Rodriguez expressed. “It’s just something to be really proud of.”

As a celebration gift, Tipton gifted Rodriguez her first American flag.

“For him to give me my first flag, it’s something that’s going to stay forever,” added Rodriguez.

She put the flag in her home for her three kids to see and learn from. Forever grateful for the support from her family, her church ‘Love and Care Ministries’ and Tipton.

Tipton is a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 8929 in Anson and shared the post is planning on creating community events to help people in similar situations as Rodriguez. He added as veterans, they look forward to teaching the next generations about U.S. history.