President Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, their spouses and Defense force Secretary Lloyd Austin honored America’southward service members who gave their lives at Arlington National Cemetery on Memorial Day. Monday marked the seventh anniversary of the death of Mr. Biden’southward son
, a veteran and former federal prosecutor who lost his battle with cancer in 2015.
The president and first lady began their mean solar day at St. Joseph on the Brandywine in Wilmington, Delaware, where Young man Biden is buried.
At Arlington National Cemetery, the president laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, as is tradition.
“Today, we renew our sacred vow. It’s a simple vow. To call back. To remember,” Mr. Biden said. “Memorial Day is always a day where hurting and pride are mixed together. We all know it, sitting here. Jill and I know information technology. Today is the mean solar day our son died. Folks, for those who accept lost a loved one in the service of our state, if your loved one is missing or unaccounted for, I know the ceremonies reopen that black hole in the center of your chest that just pulls you in, suffocates yous.”
Mr. Biden said he knows the lives of the families who lost loved ones will never be the same and acknowledged the 7,054 service members who lost their lives in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
“Days like this bring back before your eyes their grin and their express joy,” the president said. “The terminal conversation you lot had. Each of yous know it. The hurt can be overwhelming. But for and then many of you, as is with Jill and me, hurt is wrapped effectually the knowledge that your loved one was role of something bigger — bigger than whatever of usa. They chose a life of purpose.”
“They had a mission, and to a higher place all they believed in duty, they believed in accolade, they believed in their country, and notwithstanding today we are costless because they were brave,” Mr. Biden said.
The president said the country has a “duty” to do right by service members who suffered from
. The president
to urge Congress to do more to assist veterans exposed to such burn pits in Iraq and Transitional islamic state of afghanistan and has suggested those fire pits might exist linked to his late son’southward cancer.
Austin as well specifically best-selling the Americans who died in the war in Afghanistan, a state from which Mr. Biden controversially pulled the U.S. military’southward presence last summer.
“In the twelvemonth since we terminal gathered on this solemn 24-hour interval, America’due south longest state of war has come to a close,” Austin said. “And today, we remember the 2,461 American service members and personnel who fell in Afghanistan. And we remember all those who notwithstanding carry the wounds of that war, to body and to soul.”
Every bit he often does, the president emphasized the vital importance of democracy and the value in defending it.
“Republic is non perfect … simply it’southward worth fighting for,” the president said. “If necessary, worth dying for.”