NEWBURGH, N.Y. -- President Obama's visit to the Hudson Valley was about more than West Point's commencement speech for two New York veterans.
Lewis Coffield of New York City and Sanders Matthews of Highland Falls are both World War II veterans. They served as medics in Europe during the war and got the chance to meet with the president before he left New York on Wednesday.
Both men say it was an honor to meet President Obama, and that his presidency is an achievement they thought they would never see.
"He said, 'If it wasn't for you I wouldn't be in the position that I'm in.' Made me feel great, made me feel great you know and in my soul and heart I thank God that I'm here to see that. A black man; a president of the United States, cause what I have seen in my life, what I've seen, I never dreamed I would see it," said Lewis Coffield, a WWII veteran.
"It feels fine but he's just an ordinary man. He's no different from anyone else, but he's black and the president of the United States. It makes you feel good," said Sanders H. Matthews, a WWII veteran.
After meeting with the veterans, President Obama headed back to Washington.