Wilkes-Barre Scranton International Airport
Avoca, Pennsylvania

12:49 P.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT:  I’m just going to make a brief comment about my friend, Ellen Casey.  You know, she — I don’t know if — some of you Scrantonians may have known her.  But she loved with a fierceness and a tenderness that was incredible.  And it was the Irish of her.  She just was incredible.
And I was saying earlier that — my sister and I were talking about her.  And my sister reminded me of a quote about Michelangelo.  It said: He saw the angel in the marble and carved until he set it free.  That’s what she did with everybody.  I mean, she really did, if you’re knew her.
I know this sounds like an exaggeration, but I’ve been coming back home since — I’ve never left, actually.  And I’ve known the Caseys for the bulk of my life.  I don’t remember when I didn’t know the Ca- — the Caseys. 
And Bobby’s dad was older than me, then I am older than Bobby.  And we lived not far from one another.  He was on Wyoming Avenue, and I lived on North Washington Avenue.  We went to the same parish, St. Paul’s. 
And anyway, just a — she’s an incredible woman.  And she raised an enormously successful and decent family.  All the values I learned, I learned them here in Scranton.  And she was an embodiment of them. 
So, I — the reason I am not going to the funeral tomorrow is everyone would have to be wanded to go in — that I’d — I’d mess everything up if I went. 
But in addition to that, I have to meet with — at Camp David with two world leaders tomorrow morning. 
But in addition, I didn’t come — I’m not going to stay at the viewing when the people are coming in.  But, again, they have to be wanded; I just become an impediment. 
I just want to show my respect to the family.  So —
Q    Can you tell us about your Hawaii trip, sir?
THE PRESIDENT:  No, not now.  I’m going to be leaving, and I’ll be there on Monday. 
Q    Why is it important that you go?
Q    Sir, do you think —
THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.
12:52 P.M. EDT

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