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Memorial Day, May 25, 2009, a day of prayer for permanent peace ~ Presidental Proclamation

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  • Phelps Hobart
    Navy Leaguers and Friends, The White House website, http://www.whitehouse.gov, is extensive. In addition to the Presidental Proclamation, I have taken the
    Message 1 of 1 , May 25, 2009
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      Navy Leaguers and Friends,
      The White House website, http://www.whitehouse.gov, is extensive. In addition to the Presidental Proclamation, I have taken the liberty to include some additional information on Veterans and the military, even links to some White House videos.
      "Their sacrifices will not have been in vain."

      Phelps Hobart
      Vice President, Veteran Affairs
      Pacific Central Region, NLUS
      Pacific Southwest Region, NLUS




      Office of the Press Secretary

      For Immediate Release             May 22, 2009


      - - - - - - -


      For over two centuries, Americans have defended our Nation's security and protected our founding principles of democracy and equal justice under law. On Memorial Day, we honor those who have paid the ultimate price in defense of these freedoms.

      Members of the United States Armed Forces have placed our Nation's safety before their own for generations. From the first shots fired at Lexington and Concord to the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, these brave patriots have taken on great risks to keep us safe, and they have served with honor and distinction. All Americans who have enjoyed the blessings of peace and liberty remain in their debt.

      As we remember the selfless service of our fallen heroes, we pray for God's grace upon them. We also pray for all of our military personnel and veterans, their families, and all those who have lost loved ones in the defense of our freedom and safety.

      Today, as we commend their deeds, we also bear a heavy burden of responsibility to ensure that their sacrifices will not have been in vain. This means that, as we uphold the ideals for which many have given their last full measure of devotion, the United States must never waver in its determination to defend itself, to be faithful in protecting liberty at home and abroad, and to pursue peace in the world.

      In respect for their dedication and service to America, the Congress, by a joint resolution approved on May 11, 1950, as amended (36 U.S.C. 116), has requested the President to issue a proclamation calling on the people of the United States to observe each Memorial Day as a day of prayer for permanent peace and designating a period on that day when the people of the United States might unite in prayer. The Congress, by Public Law 106-579, has also designated 3:00 p.m. local time on that day as a time for all Americans to observe, in their own way, the National Moment of Remembrance.

      NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim Memorial Day, May 25, 2009, as a day of prayer for permanent peace, and I designate the hour beginning in each locality at 11:00 a.m. of that day as a time to unite in prayer. I also ask all

      Americans to observe the National Moment of Remembrance beginning at 3:00 p.m. local time on Memorial Day. I urge the press, radio, television, websites, and all other media to participate in these observances. I also request the Governors of the United States and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and the appropriate officials of all units of government, to direct that the flag be flown at half-staff until noon on this Memorial Day on all buildings, grounds, and naval vessels throughout the United States, and in all areas under its jurisdiction and control. I also request the people of the United States to display the flag at half-staff from their homes for the customary forenoon period.
      IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-second day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-third.


      # # #

      The President gives the Weekly Address paying tribute to America’s veterans
      White House Photo, 5/22/09, Samantha Appleton

      Weekly Address 5/23/09 Memorial Day

      The President pays tribute to America’s veterans, servicemen and women – particularly those who have made the ultimate sacrifice - and their families.

      Watch the Video
      The President on American security and values
      White House Photo, 5/21/09, Pete Souza

      Security and Values

      The President speaks at length on how American values and security are intertwined.

      Watch the Video

      Learn more

      Weekly Address 5/23/09 Memorial Day

      The President pays tribute to America’s veterans, servicemen and women – particularly those who have made the ultimate sacrifice - and their families.

      Watch the Video
      MON, MAY 25, 12:36 PM EST

      On Memorial Day

      The President returned from Camp David last night so that this morning he could have breakfast with Gold Star Families in the State Dining Room, participate in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery, and speak at the Memorial Amphitheater at Arlington National Cemetery.
      SAT, MAY 23, 12:00 AM EST

      Weekly Address: Sacrifice

      On Memorial Day weekend, President Obama calls on the American people to join him in paying tribute to America’s veterans, servicemen and women – particularly those who have made the ultimate sacrifice - and their families.
      Includes video.


      "For their service and sacrifice, warm words of thanks from a grateful nation are more than warranted, but they aren't nearly enough. We also owe our veterans the care they were promised and the benefits that they have earned. We have a sacred trust with those who wear the uniform of the United States of America. It's a commitment that begins at enlistment, and it must never end. But we know that for too long, we've fallen short of meeting that commitment. Too many wounded warriors go without the care that they need. Too many veterans don't receive the support that they've earned. Too many who once wore our nation's uniform now sleep in our nation's streets."

      -President Obama, March 19, 2009


      • The The Recovery Act provides the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) with more than $1.4 billion to improve services to America’s Veterans
        • The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) enables the VA to improve medical facilities and national cemeteries, provide grants to assist states in acquiring or constructing state nursing homes and extended care facilities, and to modify or alter existing facilities to care for Veterans.
        • VA will dedicate ARRA funds to hire and train 1,500 temporary claims processors to speed benefits delivery to Veterans and pursue needed information technology initiatives for improved benefits and services. Funds will also be used to oversee and audit programs, grants, and projects funded under ARRA.
        • As part of the President’s Recovery plan, VA will also make one-time payments of $250 to eligible Veterans and survivors to mitigate the effects of the current economy. These payments will be issued as early as June 2009. VA estimates $700 million in payments will be made to eligible beneficiaries as part of this measure.

      The President announced the Joint Virtual Lifetime Electronic Initiative. Both the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs will work together to define and build a system that will ultimately contain administrative and medical information from the day an individual enters military service throughout their military career, and into the Veteran phase of life.

      A 21st Century VA

      The President’s message to those who serve is this: when you come home to America, America will be there for you. This Administration will ensure that DoD and VA coordinate to provide a seamless transition from active duty to civilian life and help fix the benefit bureaucracy. This Administration will work towards modernizing the way health care is delivered and benefits are administered for our nation's veterans.

      VA Healthcare

      With Secretary Shinseki, the President will make sure the VA provides veterans the best care possible. This means improved care for poly-trauma, vision impairment, prosthetics, spinal cord injury, aging, and women's health.

      Because the nightmares of war don't always end when our loved ones return home, this Administration will work to meet the mental health needs of our veterans. Untold thousands of servicemen and women and veterans suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder or other serious psychological injury. This Administration is determined to address the challenges of caring for those affected by PTSD when they return home.

      Because thousands of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans have suffered from Traumatic Brain Injury, one of the signature injuries of these wars, this Administration will continue to improve services for cognitive injuries and ensure our veterans receive the on-going care they need. and the President supports advance appropriations for the VA budget so that healthcare for veterans is not hindered by budget delays.

      VA Services

      We all share the shame of well over one hundred thousand veterans going homeless on any given night. This Administration will work on pilot programs with not-for-profit organizations to make sure that veterans at risk of losing their homes have a roof over their heads.

      Finally, this Administration recognizes that our veterans deserve something more -- an equal chance to reach for the very dream they defend. This Administration is committed to providing the resources to effectively implement the Post-9/11 GI Bill – providing every returning service member with a real chance to afford a college education.

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