Dec 8, 2022 - World

Brittney Griner’s wife: "Today my family is whole" after Russian prisoner swap

Cherelle Griner (L), wife of Olympian and WNBA player Brittney Griner, speaks after U.S. President Joe Biden announced her release from Russian custody, at the White House on December 08, 2022

Cherelle Griner speaks after President Biden announced Brittney Griner's release from Russian custody at the White House on Dec. 8. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Cherelle Griner said Thursday that she is "overwhelmed with emotions" after her wife, WNBA star Brittney Griner, had been freed from Russian detention in a prisoner swap.

Driving the news: "Over the last nine months, you all have been so privy to one of the darkest moments of my life," Cherelle Griner said Thursday, appearing with President Biden.

  • "Today, I'm just standing here overwhelmed with emotions, but the most important emotion that I have right now is just sincere gratitude for President Biden and his entire administration."
  • "Today my family is whole, but as you all are aware, there's so many other families who are not whole," she said.
  • "[Brittney Griner] and I will remain committed to the work of getting every American home, including Paul [Whelan], whose family is in our thoughts today."
  • "We do understand that there are still people out here who are enduring what I endured the last nine months of missing, tremendously their loved ones," Cherelle Griner said.
  • Cherelle Griner also thanked Vice President Kamala Harris, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and National security adviser Jake Sullivan, among others.

The big picture: Biden on Thursday morning announced that Griner was in U.S. custody.

Go deeper... Russia says it expects "positive result" in Griner prisoner swap talks

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