tv President Trump Veterans Day Remarks and Wreath Laying CSPAN November 11, 2019 8:02pm-8:30pm EST
s in vietnam, iraq, and afghanistan. then, the fall of the berlin wall. speaks atident trump a veterans day ceremony on parade in new york city. ♪ thank you very much, stanley, and thank you for your tremendous support of this wonderful parade. today, we come together as one nation to salute the veterans of the united states armed forces, the greatest warriors to ever walk the face of the earth. our veterans risked everything
for us. now, it is our duty to serve and protect them every single day of our lives. it is truly an honor to come back to new york city right here at madison square park to be the first president ever to attend america's parade. [cheers and applause] pres. trump: to every veteran with us, to the thousands fifthing to march on avenue, it will be something, and to the 18 million veterans across our country, the first lady and i have come to express the everlasting love and loyalty of 327 million americans. i want to recognize the department of veterans affairs deputy secretary james byrne for joining us. thank you, james. thank you, james. [applause] great job. pleased to report that our
administration and all of the work we've done, the veteran satisfaction with the v.a. is it -- is at 90%, the highest rate ever recorded in the history of this particular program, and that is awfully good, and we are proud of you and the secretary, thank you. great job. [applause] also with us as new york city mayor, bill de blasio. thank you very much, mr. mayor. [applause] along with many other distinguished guests. thanks as well to everyone at the united war veterans council for putting on this incredible event, including bill white, doug mccowan, and a very special acknowledgment to someone who has devoted his life to this parade, marine vietnam veteran vince mccowan, thank you very much. [applause] pres. trump: thank you. thanks to each of you and all
of the supporters whose generosity make this possible. tremendous amount of work have been done and tremendous frankly -- frankly, amounts of money has been donated and we appreciate it and stanley. we are very glad to be joined as well by the honorary grand marshal of the parade, marine corps commandant general david berger and the sergeant major of the marine corps, troy black. thank you. thank you very much. thank you. [applause] let us also show our profound appreciation to the 2019 grand marshals of the parade who have served in world war ii, korea, vietnam, the gulf war, and iraq. this morning is more than 30,000 -- this morning, as more than 30,000 patriotic americans lined the streets of manhattan, we carry on a noble tradition that began one century ago. in 1919, the people of this city filled block after block to welcome home general pershing
and his 25,000 american soldiers after victory in world war i. just a few years before, many of those soldiers had boarded ships not far from here at hoboken port, more than four million americans supported the great war, and more than 116,000 made the ultimate sacrifice. at the 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th month in 1918, the armistice was declared and -- the war had come to an end and the allies achieved a great victory. every year since, on november 11, we have shared our nation's deepest praise and gratitude to every citizen who is worn the -- who has worn the uniform of the american army, navy, air force, coast guard, and marines. we are profoundly moved to have with us veterans of world war
ii, including one of the grand marshals, woody williams. thank you. thank you, woody. [applause] thank you very much, woody. to the veteran of the war, the glory of your needs will only grow greater with -- deeds will only grow greater with time. this nation is forever in your debt, and we thank you all. we are also pleased to be joined by veterans of the korean war, the vietnam war, the gulf war, the war on terror, you are the -- and the war on terror, you are the reason our hearts swell with pride, our foes tremble with fear, and our nation thrives. would you please stand, so that we can honor your heroic service please?
-- your heroic, service please? [applause] pres. trump: thank you very much. thank you. thank you all. each year, this parade highlights one branch of our military. this year, we honor the elite masters of air, land, and sea, the legendary leathernecks. the feared devil dogs. the first to flight, the united states marines. let's hear it. [cheers and applause] pres. trump: that's good. yesterday, we celebrated the marines' 244th birthday. that's pretty good. the few and the proud are always faithful, and they always win. i also want to thank the marine corps law enforcement
foundation, which provides scholarships to children of our fallen heroes. to every goldstar family, we will stand by your side forever, it is very fitting that the veterans' day parade begins right here in new york city. since the earliest days of our nation, new york has exemplified the american spirit and has been at the heart of our nation's story of daring and defiance. on july 2, 1776, the british armada sailed into new york harbor numbering more than 400 ships and carrying more than 30,000 men. the british came here to snub out what they thought was just a minor american revolution. didn't turn out to be that way. but the redcoats did know, what they did know was they were going to have a problem, but
they didn't know that new york would meet them with the fearsome power of american patriots. in world war i, new york, regiments like harlem, hellfighters, the lost battalion and the fighting 69th were revered all over the globe. during world war ii, 63 million tons of supplies and more than 3 -- than three million service members shipped out of new york harbor. on september 11, 2001, the whole world saw the horror, and responded to america's wicked enemies with unwavering courage, unbreakable spirit, and resolved -- resolve that is deeper than oceans, fiercer than fires, and stronger than steel. last week, i was honored to award the presidential citizens metal to an extraordinary american. rick r. enlisted at the
recruiting center in times square, became a great war hero in vietnam, and then became head of security at morgan stanley in the world trade center. on september 11, he saved 2,700 lives before giving his own. today, we are immensely grateful to be joined by rick's son, trevor. thank you, trevor. thank you very much. [applause] thank you. to trevor and every 9/11 family, we pledge to never, ever forget. the towering spirit of strength we see in this city lives within the heart of every american warrior. from the snow of valley forge to the jungles of vietnam. from the forests of bella w
ood, from the mounds of afghanistan to the deserts of iraq, that spirit has helped our fighters defeat tyrants, conquer fascism, vanquish communism and face down terrorism. just a few weeks ago, american special forces raided the isis compound and brought the world's number one terrorist leader to justice. thanks to american warriors, he -- thanks to american warriors, al-baghdadi is dead. his second in charge is dead, we have eyes on number three, his reign of terror is over and our enemies are running very, very, scared. thank you. thank you. [applause] pres. trump: those who threaten our people don't stand a chance against the righteous might of the american military. in a few weeks, we will mark the 75th anniversary of the battle
of the bulge, our nation's bloodiest battle of world war ii. more than 47,000 americans were wounded, and 19,000 gave their last breath. -- last breath for their country. we are proudly joined today by a veteran of the battle of the bulge, a native new yorker who is 94 years old and still going very, very strong. corporal jack f. [applause] pres. trump: you look good, jack. you look good. jack enlisted in the army right out of high school. he fought through brutal months of the campaign in northern france. on christmas eve, after marching nearly 100 miles in the snow in subzero temperatures, he arrived outside the town of bastogne.
in belgium. for two weeks, he fought under cecil's artillery fire and helped push the enemy back from a critical road. at one point, a mine blew up, and it destroyed his vehicle, badly hurting many. he was wounded three times, but he kept on fighting. after the allied victory at the battle of the bulge, jack fought for the remaining nine months of the war across the siegfried -- is the freed line -- across the siegfried line, up the mosul river through the rhineland and all the way across germany until he reached the concentration camp. the first nazi camp to be liberated. that was number one. that was a big, big event. as jack has said about the battle of the bulge, when the chips were down and the situation was desperate, the
american soldiers stood up to be counted. for a brief moment in history, these men held our nation's destiny in their hands. we did not fail. thank you very much. [applause] pres. trump: corporal, we will forever be proud of what you and your fellow soldiers achieved for all of humanity. also here with us today is lauren matthews, the granddaughter of a battle of the bulge veteran who has since passed away. his name was master sergeant ronnie edmonds. like so many of our veterans, he never talked about the war, laura never knew her grandfather's story until she embarked upon a school project about 10 years ago. he was in the 422nd regiment -- which was overwhelmed when the nazis launched a surprise assault. he and his men fought for three
treacherous days before being taken as prisoners of war, and after they arrived at a prison camp, the german commander sent in order over the loudspeaker, the jewish-american soldiers were all told to step out of line during roll call the next day. knowing the terrible fate that would come to his jewish comrades, roddy immediately said "we are not doing that." he sent orders to have every american step out of line with their jewish brothers in arms. the next morning, 1,290 american step forward. -- stepped forward. german commander stepped forward and said, "they cannot all be jews." roddy stared right back and said
-- "we are all jews here." at that point, the german put a gun to roddy's head and demanded, "you will order the jews to step forward immediately or i will shoot you right now through the head." roddy responded, "major, you can shoot me, but you will have to kill us all." or something. [applause] pres. trump: the german turned red, got very angry, but put his gun down and walked away. master sergeant edmonds saved 200 jewish americans soldiers -- 200 jewish americans, soldiers that day. so proud to be jewish, and so proud of our country. lauren, thank you for being here today as we remember your grandfather's unbelievable and exceptional valor. lauren, please stand up, thank you very much.
[applause] pres. trump: one of the 200 jewish-american soldiers who was saved that fateful day is staff sergeant lester tannen. he is now 96 years old. -- staff sergeant lester tanner. lester is now 96 years old. [applause] pres. trump: and he joins us here. boy, you guys are looking very good. 96. lester, you are really 96? i don't believe it. you are looking good. thank you very much. thank you, also, for your very noble service and for sharing this incredible story with the world. thank you, lester. the men and women who have donned our nation's uniforms are the bravest, toughest, strongest and most virtuous warriors to walk on earth. you left your families and fallen faraway lands. -- and fought in far away lands.
you came face-to-face with evil, and you did not back down. you returned home from war, and you never forgot your friends, who didn't return, including prisoners of war and those missing in action. every day, you think of them and pray for them. but your greatest tribute of all is the way you live your lives in the years since. you raise your families, you -- raised your families, you endured the wounds of war, and you endured the pains of that memory. yet, you keep going, you keep serving, you keep giving, and you keep loving. you volunteer at your local veterans' post, and you keep in touch with your battle comrades, you support our goldstar families, you take care of our wounded warriors, and you stand alongside our service members when they return from war. on veterans' day, our nation re-dedicates itself to our most solemn duty.
while we can never repay their -- our warriors for the boundless services and sacrifice, we must uphold with supreme vigilance our sacred obligation to care for those who have borne the battle. in just a minute, we will have a moment of silence, and we will lay a wreath at the eternal light monument. as we do, with god as our witness, we pledge to always honor our veterans and pay a mortal tribute to those who have laid down their lives so that we might be free. together, we must safeguard what generations of fearless patriots gave everything to secure. we will protect our liberty, uphold our values, and defend our home. we will ensure that righteous
legacy of america's veterans stands as a testament to this nation from now until the end of time. to every veteran here today and all across our land, you are america's greatest living heroes, and we will cherish you now, always, and forever. thank you, god bless our veterans, and god bless america. thank you very much. [applause] pres. trump: thank you very much. >> ladies and gentlemen, at this time, the marine corps honor guard will carry the centennial wreath of the eternal light memorial. after the wreath is placed, there will be a moment of silence, followed by a rifle salute and a playing of taps.
>> ladies and gentlemen, this concludes the centennial wreath laying and the visit by the commander-in-chief. please remain standing until the official party departs, after which, the opening ceremony will continue. [applause] ♪ announcer: c-span's washington journal -- live every day with news and policy issues that impact you.
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friday, at 11:00 a.m. eastern on c-span, former u.s. ambassador y. willne marie appear before the committee. find transcripts at c-span.org/impeachment. is at our table this morning, deputy editor of the military times. we are talking about veterans issues. veterans can call (202) 748-8000 , all others should call (202) 748-8001. he sat down with the v.a. secretary recently. what is his agenda, what are his priorities? guest: it has been another tumultuous year for the v.a. keys of the of the trump presidency, looking to expand the community care programs. the last few months have been implement take that we have see