Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Bush Salutes Navy With Commander-In-Chief's Trophy

President Bush saluted both successes and sacrifices Monday as he awarded the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy to the Naval Academy's football team. Navy lost the Meineke Bowl to Boston College on Dec. 30. But little matter. The Midshipmen had already beat Army 26-14 to clinch the trophy awarded annually to the winner of the football competition between the three major service academies. It's the fourth straight year that the Navy collected the trophy, and the fifth win in a row over Army. "They tell me that's a pretty big deal," President Bush said with an understated nod to one of football's most storied rivalries. President Bush said the Midshipmen are coming to the White House with such regularity that the Rose Garden might as well be called "The Yard." "It says a lot about resilience and a lot about determination, and a lot about correcting past mistakes," the President said.President Bush also hailed the contributions the team members will make off the field, as naval officers. "You volunteered after September the 11th, 2001. That's a remarkable decision you have made," the president said. "I vowed after September 11, 2001, that I would use the full power of our government to protect the American people from harm. And I meant what I said. And, therefore, anybody who signed up afterwards knew what they were getting into. It's a remarkable country when people make such a noble decision to serve their country in a time of war." The President also somberly read the names of past team members who have died, in 1991, 2001 and 2003. "The United States of America will not forget their sacrifices," Bush said. "We will complete our missions so that their sacrifices will not have gone in vain."

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