Official White House photographer Pete Souza released this week his favorite images from 2012, some depicting the happier times of President Barack Obama's year, others the worst.
A Dec. 14 photo showing the president bowing his head and closing his eyes depicts what Obama has described as the worst day of his presidency. It was the moment he learned of the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn.
"Our hearts are broken today," he said in an address to the country following the shooting that left 26 people dead including 20 children.
"We have been through this too many times. Whether it's an elementary school in Newtown or a shopping mall in Oregon or a temple in Wisconsin or a movie theater in Aurora or a street corner in Chicago, these neighborhoods are our neighborhoods, and these children are our children."
Other moments in Souza's collection showed the lighter sides of Obama's tenure, including several moments from Chicago.
Among the images are President Barack Obama and First Lady Michele Obama watching Valerie Jarrett's daughter and son-in-law exchange vows from the senior advisor's Chicago home, Obama tossing a football at Soldier Field after the NATO Summit and the president and First Lady looking at the Windy City skyline.
"We had just arrived at the helicopter landing zone in Chicago and instead of walking right to the motorcade, the President and First Lady walked past their vehicle to the edge of Lake Michigan to view the skyline of their hometown," the caption of the last one reads.