SAUL LOEB / AFP / Getty Images

President Barack Obama hugs outgoing Defense Secretary Leon Panetta Friday.

“They say that you've never seen our wounded warriors smile as wide, or heard them laugh as loud, as when they get a visit from their secretary of defense. And whatever the challenge, Leon, you always give it to us straight, sometimes in words that can't be repeated here in public.”
— President Obama, speaking at the formal farewell ceremony for Defense Secretary Leon Panetta Friday afternoon at Fort Myer, Va. Panetta plans to stay at the helm until a successor, probably nominee Chuck Hagel, is confirmed by the Senate.
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