Trump Pledges to 'Unify' Americans on Inauguration Eve
US President-elect Donald Trump acknowledges supporters with his wife Melania at the "Make America Great Again! Welcome Celebration" at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington. (Image: Reuters)
A day ahead of his inauguration as the 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump on Thursday said he is going to unite the country as he promised the Americans to work hard and turn things around.
Washington: A day ahead of his inauguration as the 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump on Thursday said he is going to unite the country as he promised the Americans to work hard and turn things around.
"We are going to unify our country and we will make America great again. We will make America great for all of our people, everybody throughout the country," Trump said while a crowd of thousands gathered at the Lincoln Memorial here at his inaugural 'Make America Great Again' rally and concert.
Joined by his wife and incoming First Lady Melania Trump, daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner, his sons and their families, Trump enjoyed the nearly two-and-a-half hour concert.
Speaking to the cheering crowd comprising of young military personnel and veterans among common people, Trump assured that things will change in America for the good under his leadership.
He reiterated his campaign promises of bringing jobs back and strengthening the military and the country's borders.
"I promise you that I will work so hard, we are going to get it turned around, we are going to bring our jobs back. We are not going to let other countries take our jobs any longer.
"We are going to build up our great military, we are going to strengthen our borders, we are going to do things that haven't been done for our country for many, many decades," he said amid loud cheers and applause.
While arriving at the Lincoln Memorial with his wife, the President-elect stopped in front of the towering statue of Abraham Lincoln and gave a salute to the former US President.
Earlier, the official inaugural activities began with Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence laying a wreath at the tomb of the unknown soldiers in a sombre ceremony at the Arlington National Ceremony. Trump's family stood at a distance as he paid his respects to the American soldiers who have paid the ultimate sacrifice for the nation in the line of duty.
The inaugural concert featured performances by Indian-American DJ Ravidrums, Sam Moore and US Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps, band rock band 3 Doors Down, YouTube sensation-- The Piano Guys. Academy award-winning actor John Voight delivered the opening remarks.
Trump thanked the American people for their support during his journey to the White House that began 18 months ago, saying he was "just a messenger" for the people who had become tired of the way things were moving forward in Washington and across the country.
"We were tired of seeing what was happening. We wanted real change, and I so look forward to tomorrow. We are going to see something amazing," he said.
Referring to the crowd, he said people are pouring into Washington by the "thousands and thousands".
He said thousands turned up at the Lincoln Memorial for the "small little concert", which is unique in itself.
He also pointed out that during the last month of the presidential campaign thousands of people participated in his rallies.
Talking about the campaign, Trump said, "it's a movement that began and it's a movement like we have never seen anywhere in the world. There's never been a movement like this. It's very very special".
Noting that a lot of people did not give his campaign much of a chance, in the beginning, he said it was clear that something was happening in its last month.
"The polls started going up. They didn't want to give us credit," he said assuring the American people that they will not be "forgotten anymore".
"I will be cheering you on. What we have done, it's so special. All over the world, they are talking about it. We are going to make America great again and greater than ever before," Trump said.
As the concert concluded, the Trump family waved to the crowd from the stage before departing from the venue.
Indian-American DJ Ravidrums, who opened the concert with his percussion performance before Trump arrived, took the stage a second time, performing before the President-elect.
The concert was held at the Lincoln Memorial, an imposing historical monument that houses the 170-ton seated statue of the 16th President of the United States Abraham Lincoln.
The inaugural event began with full American pageantry and patriotic fervour, celebrating the nation's democratic tradition of the peaceful transition of power from one administration to the next.