Obama returns to Fort Hood for second memorial service in five years

U.S. President Barack Obama places a challenge coin on a memorial as he and first lady Michelle Obama pay their respects for the dead soldiers at the conclusion of service in Fort HoodBy Steve Holland and Lisa Maria Garza FORT HOOD, Texas (Reuters) – As the U.S. flag snapped at half-staff in a stiff breeze, President Barack Obama for the second time in five years attended a solemn memorial service on Wednesday for victims of a tragic shooting at Fort Hood Army base. Standing before an estimated 3,000 people, including family members of the fallen and soldiers dressed in Army fatigues, Obama spoke at a podium where the combat helmet, rifle, boots and photos of each of the three victims of last week’s attack were on display. We are here on behalf of the American people to honor your loved ones and offer whatever comfort we can,” Obama said. “But know this, we also draw strength from you.” Obama was accompanied at the service by his wife, Michelle, who has made caring for U.S. troops returning from wars in Iraq and Afghanistan a central theme of her White House tenure.

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