Senator John McCain Remembered for Courage, Service, Patriotism

Spencer Underwood
August 26, 2018

He offered reassurance to Australia after the famously brusque Trump-Turnbull phone call, openly criticising Mr Trump for an "unnecessary and frankly harmful open dispute" just weeks into Mr Trump's presidency, a remarkable act by a senior senator from the same party as the President.

McCain was the first sitting senator to ever host SNL, and while he played himself (and other politicians, like then-Attorney General John Ashcroft) in several sketches, he also fully committed to some sheer nonsense - with hilarious results.

President Donald Trump, who once criticized fellow Republican McCain for being taken prisoner during the Vietnam War, said his "deepest sympathies and respect" went out to McCain's family.

McCain died on Saturday afternoon, one day after his family announced he would be discontinuing his brain cancer treatment.

McCain, who was being treated at his ranch near Sedona, Arizona, was surrounded by his wife Cindy and his family during his final hours. For 50 miles along Interstate 17 southbound, on every overpass and at every exit ramp, people watched the procession.

"We are all in his debt", said former president Obama, the Democrat to whom McCain lost the presidency in 2008. He was fiercely critical of Trump's performance during a joint press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin following a July 2018 summit with the Russian leader in Helsinki, Finland.

Speaking to CNN's Jake Tapper on "State of the Union" last September, shortly after he went public with his prognosis, McCain said he was "very happy" with his life and what he has "been able to do".

Obama said the two political opponents "saw our political battles, even, as a privilege, something noble, an opportunity to serve as stewards of those high ideals at home, and to advance them around the world". "And to me, he was a friend whom I'll deeply miss", Mr Bush said.

His family announced that he would lie in state in Phoenix, Arizona, and in Washington DC before a funeral at the Washington National Cathedral and his burial in Annapolis, Maryland.

Tributes poured in from around the globe.

Senator McCain was also part of an "internationalist" bipartisan coalition in the Senate that would vote for free trade (the North American Free Trade Agreement chief among them) and to supporting and expanding NATO after the fall of the Soviet Union, with Joe Biden among the like-minded Democrats on these critical votes in the US Senate. He devoted his entire life to his country. RIP Senator John McCain. "It sprang from his belief in democracy and freedom". McCain delivered the speech with a winning earnestness and subtle comic timing, proving once again that he understood the value of self-parody when it came to winning the hearts and minds of the American people.

McCain was the son and grandson of admirals and followed them to the US Naval Academy.

McCain walks inside the Hoa Lo prison, nicknamed "the Hanoi Hilton", in Vietnam, where McCain was kept as a prisoner of war from October 1967 until March 1973.

In 1986, he ran for the Senate seat vacated by longtime Republican Sen.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell called Mr McCain a "fascinating personality".

But in a fresh sign of hostility, Trump, who once said he didn't consider McCain a war hero because he was captured, didn't even mention the Arizona senator's name. Barak added that McCain was "a huge friend to Israel, especially regarding its security".

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked eulogized the late USA senator John McCain on social media writing that "he was a true patriot and a true friend of Israel". "His dedication to his country and the military were unsurpassed, and maybe most of all, he was a truth teller - never afraid to speak truth to power in an era where that has become all too rare".

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