Obama's Memorial Day message: Honor the lost, care for the living

President Obama used his weekly address to commemorate Memorial Day, calling on Americans to honor those that fought and died in wars for the nation.

Obama said he and his family plan to visit Arlington National Cemetery to pay tribute to troops who have died in American battles, before heading to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial to do the same.


"No words can ever bring back a loved one who has been lost. No ceremony can do justice to their memory. No honor will ever fill their absence," he said. "But on Memorial Day, we come together as Americans to let these families and veterans know that they are not alone."

Obama also used the address to reiterate the need to take care of veterans after they return from combat, including those now returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

Veterans deserve healthcare and benefits, especially those wounded and their families, he said. And all veterans also deserve the chance at a quality education and good job, so they can "enjoy the freedom that they risked everything to protect."

"As president, I have no higher honor than serving as their commander in chief," he said. "But with that honor comes a solemn responsibility – one that gets driven home every time I sign a condolence letter, or meet a family member whose life has been turned upside down."