President Obama asks Americans to remember troops in Afghanistan

U.S. citizens should remember the more than 60,000 American troops continuing to serve in Afghanistan, where they encounter frequent dangers like roadside bombs, President Barack Obama said on Monday.

Obama made the statement during a commemoration ceremony for Memorial Day at the Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia. Obama said not all Americans are able to see or completely grasp the depth of sacrifice soldiers make for U.S. national security every single day. In response to a letter he recently received from a Naval officer, he spoke of the need to remember the many U.S. troops still serving in Afghanistan.

"As we gather here today, at this very moment, more than 60,000 of our fellow Americans still serve far from home in Afghanistan," Obama said. "They're still going out on patrol, still living in spartan forward operating bases, still risking their lives to carry out their mission. And when they give their lives, they are still being laid to rest in cemeteries in the quiet corners across our country, including here in Arlington."

Obama told the stories of Staff Sergeant Frankie Phillips who died three weeks ago when his vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb, Captain Sara Cullen who died in a helicopter crash and Staff Sergeant Eric Christian who died during a recent escort mission. He said Americans should remember their service and the service of all other brave Americans serving the U.S.

"And that's why, on this day, we remember our sacred obligation to those who laid down their lives so we could live ours: to finish the job these men and women started by keeping our promise to those who wear America's uniform -- to give our troops the resources they need; to keep faith with our veterans and their families, now and always; to never stop searching for those who have gone missing or who are held as prisoners of war," Obama said.