How's it going, everybody? Are you hot? It's supposed to be hot. It's the fourth of July. Happy Fourth of July, everybody! On behalf of the entire Obama family, welcome to the White House.
Now, the last thing anybody wants to do is to ruin a nice backyard barbecue with a long speech, so I'm going to be quick.
It is always such an honor for us to spend this holiday with members of our military and your extraordinary families. All of you represent what is best in America. You serve under our proud flag. You and your families sacrifice more than most of us can ever know -- all in defense of those God-given rights that were first put to paper 236 years ago: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
So as your Commander-in-Chief -- but also as an American -- I want to invite all of you over to say one thing: thank you.
Today, all across America, at schools, and beaches, and in town squares, Americans are celebrating the freedoms that all of you and your families defend. Like many of them, we're grilling in the backyard. We've got some pretty good tunes for you. We've got the outstanding Marine Band. Give them a big round of applause. And we've got Brad Paisley and his band in the house for a little country.
We've also got all of you. We've got Army in the house. We've got Navy. We've got Air Force. You know we've got some Marines here. And we've got Coast Guard. Today, we salute all of you.
We salute our soldiers, like Sergeant Alan Ruehs, who, in the midst of an enemy ambush in Afghanistan, risked his own life to save the lives of four others.
We salute our sailors, like Petty Officer Taylor Morris, who suffered terrible wounds while serving in Afghanistan on an Explosive Ordnance Disposal Team, but who inspires us all through his incredible recovery.
We salute an Airman -- Colonel Charles Barnett, who led close to 200 combat missions in Afghanistan and still serves his country by volunteering to care for our fallen heroes at Arlington National Cemetery.
我们向一个美国人-- Charles Barnett上校致敬，他在阿富汗带队执行了近200次任务，现在以志愿者身份照料安息在阿灵顿国家公墓的英雄们，他这样继续服务国家。
We salute a Marine -- Corporal Alex Nguyen, who sustained serious injuries when his vehicle struck an IED in Afghanistan, but who carries on stronger than ever.
We salute a “Coastie” from my hometown of Chicago -- Lieutenant Commander Michelle Watson, who was one of the first African American women to graduate from the Coast Guard Academy, and went on to perform exceptional service in Operation Enduring Freedom.
我们向一个来自我的故乡芝加哥的“海岸警备队员”-- Michelle Watson中尉致敬，她是海岸警备队学院毕业的第一位非洲裔美国妇女，她参加了非凡的永久自由行动。
All the men and women who stand with us here this afternoon are an example of this generation of heroes -- this 9/11 Generation that has earned its place in history alongside the greatest generations. Because of your service and sacrifice, all of our troops are now out of Iraq. Because of your service and sacrifice, we took the fight to al Qaeda and we brought Osama bin Laden to justice. Because of your service and sacrifice, we're transitioning out of Afghanistan. We will remain ready for any threat. That is all because of you.
And as long as I have the honor of being your Commander-in-Chief, I want you all -- our men and women in uniform, our veterans and their families -- to know this: America will always remember. We will always be there for you, just as you've been there for us. That's my promise. That is America's promise. And that is one that we pledge to fulfill on this Independence Day.
So, Happy Fourth of July, everybody. Enjoy the fireworks. Get some hotdogs. God bless you. God bless your families. And God bless these United States of America.
And with that, let me turn it back over to the United States Marine Band.