WASHINGTON (AP) — Vice President Joe Biden is thanking breast cancer survivors for their courage to speak up and share their stories in order to help others.

Biden and his wife, Jill, hosted a reception Wednesday honoring Breast Cancer Awareness Month at their Naval Observatory residence, which was aglow with pink lights.

Biden said, quote, "Every time you speak up about what you've been through, it takes you back to having gone through it. There's nothing easy about that."

Among the guests at the reception were Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (seh-BEEL'-yuhs), Small Business Administration Administrator Karen Mills, Elizabeth and John Edwards' daughter Kate, and breast cancer awareness advocates.

Jill Biden has been involved in breast cancer awareness activities for nearly 20 years.