Partnership at its finest. First Lady Michelle Obama and Second Lady Jill Biden reflected on their close friendship at their emotional final Joining Forces event at the White House in Washington, D.C., on Monday, November 14.
The duo hosted the celebration in honor of the military families and organizations that have supported the armed forces throughout President Barack Obama‘s administration. Jill, who is the wife of Vice President Joe Biden and mother of late Iraq War veteran Beau Biden, told the crowd that the Obamas and Bidens are now “family.”
“It’s hard to believe that after five years, this is our last Joining Forces event,” she said. “I remember the moment eight years ago — backstage in Springfield, Illinois — when Michelle and I decided we wanted to focus on this important issue together. It was that exciting day when then-Senator Obama announced that my husband, Joe, would be his running mate. Michelle turned to me and asked what would I like to work on if we won. I told her that I wanted to tackle the issues that our military families were facing, and she said, ‘Me too!'”
Jill, 65, then introduced Michelle, 52, saying, “As a military mom, I am grateful for her service. I love her. We’re family.”
Taking the stage, the FLOTUS quipped, “This wasn’t supposed to be tearful.”
“Let me just start by thanking my partner in crime, Jill Biden,” Michelle said with tears in her eyes. “Jill has been by far the best partner I could’ve ever imagined. Not just for the work on Joining Forces, but our families have joined forces in so many ways. I’m just grateful to have her by my side. She’s been a devoted advocate for our military community long before she ever came to the White House.”
The first lady added, “We’re family. We have cried a lot. We’ve been there for each other as much as we can throughout this amazing journey. And Jill is not just brilliant, but she is kind. She is very funny, and she is one of the strongest people I know. I love and admire her with all my heart.”
Michelle and Jill’s close friendship matches that of their husbands’. In the aftermath of the recent 2016 presidential election, President Obama, 55, and V.P. Biden, 73, ruled the internet as social media users turned their friendship into hilarious memes.