Shine, Give, Share: Honoring Military Families for the Holidays

♪♪(music playing)♪♪ First Lady Michelle Obama:
We’re using the holiday season
here at the White House to highlight our troops. So throughout the house,
we found creative ways to pay tribute. This will be such a wonderful
memory for so many people, and that’s why it’s
so special for us, and none of it could have
happened without volunteers we’ve had helping out
over the past few days. Rita:
As far as the volunteers go,
I think there is, I know, about 130 and probably more than
that coming from all over the United States. I understand that there is
over 40 states represented. Some are military currently. Some are former military. Some have children in
the military or at least know somebody. So it’s especially
meaningful to them. Ron:
I think it’s really important,
as you see in the tree behind us that they’re decorating, that
it is honoring those people that are serving our country
in foreign distant lands, and they are giving
up a lot to do that. The ornaments serve — the
primary one is a little picture frame and inside that picture
frame is a medal that honors different types of service,
going all the way back to the First World War. When the military members come
through here and they see the awards that even some of
them have on their chest, it’ll really — it’ll be a
heartfelt experience for them. Ruth:
We were really blessed that we
were able to do the Gold Star Family Tree, which is dedicated
to the memory of our loved ones, anyone who’s been killed while
they served on active duty in the Armed Forces. Jennifer:
They are not forgotten, and the
Obama administration has made that a focal point — that
military doesn’t mean “current military.” It means all military;
past, present. This means so much to us that
we can come out and be part and just smile. So we smile a lot and laugh
a lot and we move forward. First Lady Michelle Obama:
Military families truly
represent what is best about America, and that’s something
that I’ve seen again and again as I’ve traveled across the
country over the past few years. Dr. Jill Biden:
Michelle Obama and I, through
our initiative of Joining Forces, have asked all Americans
to commit to an act of kindness for those who are deployed
and to really thank military families for what they’ve
done for Americans. We’ve invited school children,
they’re fourth graders, to come with United Through
Reading to listen to a soldier who’s reading a
book to the children, and actually, his son
is in this class. It was really great for little
Jimmy to see his dad and for the rest of the class who doesn’t
have someone deployed, that they recognize
that, you know, this holiday may be a
little hard for Jimmy. Patty Shinseki:
When our troops come home and
they’re in your churches or in your communities, reach out and
thank them and remember that you can help in small ways, because
even after all of our troops come home, they still
need the support and love. Even if they’re here,
they are still in uniform, they’re still serving, and
their families are serving, as well, right alongside them. ♪♪(music playing)♪♪

Stephen Childs

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