December 27th, 2015 11:08 EST
Obama Meets With Service Members for Christmas
President Barack Obama and his family spent part of Christmas Day yesterday with Marines, sailors and their families at the Kaneohe Marine Corps Base in Hawaii.
The commander in chief praised the service members for their dedication, and he thanked their families for the sacrifices they make.
This is one of our favorite things to do every single year, because not only are we in Hawaii for Christmas, but we`re also able to say thank you on behalf of the American people, " Obama said.
Many of the Marines and sailors had deployed at least once to active war zones. And while the number of troops serving in such places is down, Americans still are serving in harm`s way, Obama noted.
Service Members` Work Remains Dangerous
Even though we`ve 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, " he said. And it`s still dangerous, as we saw this past week, where we had some outstanding, brave men and women who were killed. " The president was referring to a Dec. 21 suicide bombing in Afghanistan that claimed the lives of six U.S. airmen
The airmen made the supreme sacrifice to keep America free, and that is one reason for never taking for granted what service members do for the country, Obama said. You help keep us strong, " he added. And whatever service you`re in, whatever branch, we are extraordinarily grateful for everything that you do every single day. "
Obama and his family have visited his home state of Hawaii for Christmas each year of his presidency. He has used the Kaneohe gym and the beach at Bellows Field a number of times. And each year, he has visited with the service members at K Bay " for Christmas.
For those of you who are with your families, that is a true blessing, " the president said. For those of you who are still a little bit far away from home, we hope you had a chance to give them our best and let them know that we love them as well. But the main thing I just want to say is, "Keep up the extraordinary work.` "
Photo Credit: Wikipedia