Vice President Mike Pence addressed military personnel following an Easter church service on Sunday morning in the Korean peninsula.
His address came hours after North Korea conducted a failed missile launch shortly before Pence's arrival.
"This morning's provocation from the North is just the latest reminder of the risks each one of you face every day in the defense of the freedom of the people of South Korea and the defense of America in this part of the world," Pence said. "Your willingness to step forward, to serve, to stand firm without fear inspires our nation and inspires the world, and it's an honor for us to share this meal with you today. Thank you for your service.
"We look out today and we see courage writ large in the soldiers and the families gathered here, and I just want to assure you on behalf of the people of the United States and in these troubled times in this part of the world. Your courage and your valor still amazes the American people.
"So we just wanted to come and say thank you, thank you for your service, and thank you general for your leadership and the leadership in service of all those represented here. Carrying on a tradition, and a commitment to freedom here on this peninsula that is now more than six decades in the running, and succeeding, far beyond those who carve this free society in this ancient land could possibly have imagined perhaps. It's the American soldier, shoulder to shoulder with the Korean people, who fought for, and won the freedom more than six decades ago."