King Juan Carlos’ Toast

Toast by His Majesty the King of Spain at the National Naval Aviation Museum

Governor Crist, Senators Nelson and Martinez, Authorities, Congressman Miller, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Thank you very much for your kind and generous words.

Thank you also for the warm welcome you have given to the Queen and myself in this dear city of Pensacola.

A city with strong ties to Spain, to the origins of the United States, and to the old friendship that has enriched relations between America and Spain, on both shores of the Atlantic.

A friendship that flourished during the United States’ fight for Independence, when Spain actively poured financial, political and military aid into assisting the American patriots.

This excellent Museum, a witness to the rich history of naval aviation in the United States and Pensacola, inspires us to highlight how intrepid men have contributed decisively to forging the national histories of both Spain and the United States.

They were free, sincere and clear-headed men who knew how to assume their responsibilities to serve their country and other friendly peoples.

Among them, Bernardo de Galvez, to whom one of my eighteenth-century ancestors, King Charles the Third, granted a coat of arms to mark the heroism and spirit of service he showed in Pensacola.

The figure of General Galvez reminds us that today many other men and women, from the United States and Spain, from countless industries and professions, are devoting their best efforts to strengthening the relationship between our two countries.

The Queen joins me in thanking, once again, the City of Pensacola, its authorities, its citizens and its associations for the great and noble effort they are making day by day to carry on the memory of our shared history.

A memory that will always be the seed of friendship between the United States and Spain. Thank you, Admiral, for your generous hospitality here in this interesting and attractive National Naval Aviation Museum.

And now, may I ask you to raise our glasses to toast you all and most especially the members of “Celebrate Pensacola” and those who proudly develop our common historical and cultural heritage in this lovely city.

Thank you very much.