President Trump Honors Fallen Service Members

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And Trump singled out his homeland security secretary, John Kelly, for whom military sacrifice is close to home.

Secretary Kelly himself made headlines this weekend, downplaying the significance of Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner looking to open a backchannel line of communication with Russian Federation during the transition.

Trump's speech also quoted from the iconic letter to Sarah Ballou written by Union soldier Sullivan Ballou, who penned the now-famous letter to his wife a week before being mortally wounded at the First Battle of Bull Run. "Special, special people", he said.

Trump tweeted Monday. "I look forward to paying my respects to our courageous men and women on this Memorial Day at Arlington National Cemetery later this morning".

In his first Memorial Day remarks as commander in- chief, Trump praised those who died in war and their families. The playing of "Taps" echoed as Trump placed his hand over his heart and military officers saluted. "If we truly want to give meaning to the sacrifice of those who gave all on our behalf, each of us will leave here today determined to find, in some small way, a method of serving our nation and our communities in their honor", he said.

Stepping to the microphone to deliver the address, Trump seemed to relish the warm welcome from the audience gathered in the sun-splashed amphitheater.

"Words can not measure the depth of their devotion, the purity of their love or the totality of their courage", Trump told an audience that included relatives of slain service members.

"Finest man I ever knew", Kelly said, as he began to choke up with emotion on Fox News.

Accompanied by Pence, Trump walked briefly among the white marble headstones and greeted families, including Brittany Jacobs and her 6-year-old son, Christian, who was dressed like a Marine.

As the anthem played, Trump swayed back and forth while patting his chest before beginning to sing along to portions of the song with a bit more enthusiasm than some consider appropriate for the occasion. Jacobs' father, Marine Sgt. Christopher Jacobs, died during a training accident in California in 2011.

This Memorial Day, President Donald Trump did what presidents before him have done - he made a solemn visit to Arlington National Cemetery. Andrew Byers, a member of the Green Berets who was killed during an attack on a Taliban bastion a year ago.

Afterward the speech, Trump joined Sec.