President Barack Obama thanked troops and their families for their service during Christmas Day remarks at Marine Corps Base Hawaii, noting the six service members who died earlier this week after a suicide attack in Afghanistan at Bagram Air Force Base.
“Even though we have been able to reduce the number of folks who are deployed in places like Iraq and Afghanistan, there are still folks over there every single day and it’s still dangerous, as we saw this past week with the outstanding brave Americans who were killed,” said Obama, who was joined by first lady Michelle Obama.
“And so we never take for granted all what all of you to for the American people. You help keep us free. You help keep us strong. And whatever service you’re in, we are extraordinarily grateful for everything you do every single day. And we hope you guys had a wonderful Christmas.”
The holiday visit and remarks have become an annual tradition for the President and first lady. There were about 460 people — service members and their families — at the event, according to a base spokesman. After the remarks, the Obamas took pictures with the audience.
Read more: CNN