ABC News' Jon Garcia Reports: President George W. Bush called deployed members of the armed forces Monday to wish them a Merry Christmas and thank them for their service. The president called ten members of the armed forces Monday -- three Army, two Navy, two Air Force, two Marine and one Coast Guard -- who are stationed in Iraq, Afghanistan and on Navy and Coast Guard ships at sea. "Their country is proud of them," White House Press Secretary Dana Perino said the president told them. "They are serving a cause that is very noble," Perino said the president told them. "It is people like these that make our military so strong."
The president reportedly told the service members that he knows it is hard for their kids not to have them at home but as they get older, they will appreciate the sacrifices they are making to keep our country safe. Bush asked the service members to pass on to their fellow service members a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Telephoning U.S. service members has become a Christmas Eve tradition for the president.
Bush is spending Christmas at the Camp David presidential retreat with first lady Laura Bush, their twin daughters, Jenna and Barbara; Laura Bush's mother Jenna Welch; the president's sister Doro Bush Koch and her family, and the president's brother, Marvin and his family.