“We have just returned from the Oval Office and I am honored to announce on behalf of the President of the United States that the men and women of the United States Space Force will be known as Guardians,” Pence said at an event celebrating the first year of the Space Force.
Pence opened his remarks on Friday with greetings from President Donald Trump, calling him the “founder of the United States Space Force” who has been “an enthusiast” of the service since its inception.
Trump had no other events on his schedule that conflicted with this event on the White House grounds. It is therefore not clear why he was absent, even though the public schedule does not include all of the President’s activities. The White House did not respond to CNN’s inquiry as to why Trump did not attend the event.
The vice president said the Space Force has grown stronger day by day since its inception and praised General Jay Raymond, chief of Space Operations, for his work as head of the service. Pence also noted that Col. Mike Hopkins, currently aboard the International Space Station, was transferred from the Air Force to the Space Force on Friday.
“Today we are making history, with the first two installations in the history of the United States Space Force bearing the name of this new branch of the service,” said Pence at Cape Canaveral.
The two bases are now referred to as Cape Canaveral Space Force Station and Patrick Space Force Base.