His youngest son, Colin, in a tiny little suit and bow tie, got the somber ceremony off to a light start just before his father and the president entered the room. He scrambled behind the podium and played peek-a-boo with the audience before one of the president's military aides chased him off the stage back into his mother's arms.
Obama described Keating as among the most remote outposts in Afghanistan, a collection of concrete and plywood buildings among trenches and sandbags at the bottom of a steep valley. The president said a later investigation found the terrain "gave ideal cover for insurgents to attack'' and left the outpost "tactically indefensible.''
"Our troops should not ever be put in a position where they have to defend the indefensible,'' Obama said. "That's what these soldiers did for each other in sacrifice driven by pure love.''