WASHINGTON, April 20 (UPI) -- U.S. President Barack Obama Friday welcomed participants in the Wounded Warrior Project Soldier Ride to the White House, calling them an "inspiration."
"This is the fourth time we've had the Soldier Ride here in the South Lawn. And this year, you've already covered some ground -- 34 miles over the last few days, and another 24-mile ride tomorrow. So our job is to give you a break, maybe even a little extra fuel, and get you back on the road," Obama said.
The ride was established by the Wounded Warrior Project to help restore wounded vets' physical and emotional well-being, the White House said in a release.
"The chance for the participating Wounded Warriors to meet with our commander in chief and be recognized for their sacrifices is truly special," said WWP Executive Director Steven Nardizzi. "The mission of Wounded Warrior Project is to honor and empower Wounded Warriors, and we thank President Obama for hosting this event and for his shared commitment to fulfill our mission."
"Some of you may be athletes looking to get the competitive juices flowing again. Maybe some of you are trying to see how far you can push yourselves. Some of you are doing it for the camaraderie and the bond that comes when you work hard alongside people who know what you're going through," Obama said. "Maybe you're doing it to honor a loved one or a buddy. But all of you are here because you believe in living your lives to the fullest. You know that each of us has a responsibility to seize the opportunities we've been blessed with. You ride because you can, and you ride for those who can't. That's what this is all about. …
"As commander in chief, I promise to do everything I can to make sure that you guys get the care and the benefits that you deserve, that you've earned. … Now it's time for the country to serve you."