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President thanks MacDill troops, families for their service to nation

  • Published
  • By Terri Moon Cronk
  • DoD News, Defense Media Activity

President Barack Obama visited service members at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, Dec. 7, to thank them on behalf of the American people for their dedication to the nation.

"We have been so reliant on the outstanding work that has been done by [U.S. Special Operations Command and U.S. Central Command], the extraordinary leadership from the highest general down to the person who's just started,” the president said. “I have been consistently in awe of your performance and the way that you've carried out your mission.”

MacDill AFB is also home to the 927th Air Refueling Wing and the 6th Air Mobility Wing.

Obama paid tribute to the base’s 75th anniversary during his troop talk.

“For 75 years -- from World War II through Korea, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Vietnam, the Gulf War, the Afghan and Iraq wars -- the men and women of this base have always stepped up when we needed them most. So, on behalf of the entire country, I want to wish you a happy 75th anniversary,” Obama said. “It has been the privilege and honor of a lifetime to be your commander in chief -- the commander in chief of the finest fighting force the world has ever known. You are the best. Because we have the best people.” 

Praises Troops, Families

The troops and their families have been inspirational, Obama said.

“You and your families have inspired us. We've been inspired by your patriotism, for stepping forward, for volunteering, for dedicating yourself to a life of service,” he said. “We've been inspired by your devotion, your willingness to sacrifice for all of us. We've been inspired by your example.”

America’s service members remind the nation that “we're all part of one team,” the president said.

“We take care of each other,” he added. “And you remind us of what patriotism really means.”

The service members will continue on with their mission, the president said, “but I will tell you that Michelle and I, having had the experience and the honor of working with you, are going to make it one of our missions as civilians to support you in every way that we can.”