President Barack Obama was officially inaugurated into office on January 20, 2009.
The day began with a large crowd in the East Room of the White House and Obama’s son, Beau Biden, was introduced by a video message from the first lady.
“This is the first day of my presidency,” Obama said.
“The first day was not a happy ending.
But that’s okay, because it is the beginning of the end.”
Obama then thanked his wife, Michelle, and his daughters, Malia and Sasha, and urged them to embrace their new freedoms and “fight for equality and dignity.”
Obama’s speech was followed by a celebration in the Oval Office by Vice President Joe Biden, his wife Jill Biden, first lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Biden’s wife Sarah Palin and other family members.
The President, who had just finished a long-awaited trip to Asia, was joined by Vice Presidents Joe Biden and Joe Biden Jr. and by Michelle Obama and Biden’s daughter, Chelsea.
Obama, who is set to leave the White Houses residence in West Virginia on Thursday, told the crowd he’s looking forward to seeing everyone in the West Wing on Friday.
“I know you’re feeling a lot of sadness, but I know you can’t let that get in the way of this,” he said.
The West Wing was a place where Obama, who was also sworn in as the nation’s 44th president on January 21, 2009, often took selfies and enjoyed an afternoon stroll.
It was also a place that President-elect Donald Trump used to taunt him.
During his first year, the Obamas had to navigate a variety of challenges, including the collapse of the housing market, the U.S. military’s occupation of Iraq and the economic collapse of 2008.
The Obamas also had to confront the fallout from a 2012 raid in which two U.K. women and a U.N. employee were killed during a failed mission to rescue Osama bin Laden.