Members of the 2006 U.S. Winter Olympic and Paralympic teams were honored Wednesday by President Bush. They gathered at the White House for a reunion and some presidential praise.
The sounds of an Olympic fanfare filled the air as the president met with hundreds of Olympians on the White House lawn.
He thanked them for their accomplishments in Turin, Italy, and the example they have set for the Olympians of the future.
"The fact that you compete hard and train hard and set high goals and succeed is a really important part of encouraging others," he said.
Mr. Bush recognized the medal winners in the crowd, and those who overcame great hardships just to compete. He made special mention of Olympic speed skater Joey Cheek, who donated the bonus money he received for his gold medal to help the refugee children of Sudan.
"What a wonderful example for all of us in America to know that with our personal victories comes a responsibility to help those who suffer and those who need help," he said.
Standing with the athletes in the late Spring sunshine, the president said on skis, skates, snowboards and sleds, the Olympians served as ambassadors of America. He said they did their job well.