Senator John McCain Passes Away at Age 81



Final Day of The Republican National Convention in Minneapolis – St. Paul Minnesota held at The Xcel Center Bruce Cotler 2008 9/4/08 John McCain

Stratis Bohle

John McCain, the elder Arizona Senator for the United States Senate and former Vietnam POW, passed away on Saturday, August 25 in his home in Arizona. He had a glioblastoma, a malignant brain tumor which he had been battling since June of last year. He had been treated with radiation, chemotherapy, and surgery to remove the tumor since the discovery.

He was flying over Hanoi in 1968, and was shot down where he suffered shattered legs and a broken arm. He was kept in captivity for 5 ½ years and suffered increased torture which eventually left his arms permanently disabled causing him to be unable to move them over his head. He was granted early release due to his father being the commander of all American forces in the Pacific at the time, but McCain refused on the basis that he wanted those captured before him to be released first.

He was released after the treaty of Paris in 1973, and treated the injuries he suffered during captivity. He then retired from the U.S. Navy in 1981 as Captain and ran successfully for the 1st Arizona congressional district 1 year later. He held that seat until 1987 where he took Barry Goldwater’s old Senate seat in the 86’ midterms.

He then ran for the Republican Presidential Nominee in 2000 but lost to Governor George Bush. He kept his seat and ran for the President once more in 2008, won the Republican Nomination and chose Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska as his VP. He lost in the general election in November to Senator Barack Obama.

He ran for reelection in 2010 and 2016 for his Senate seat and won both times. He clashed with Candidate Donald Trump who attacked him for being a POW stating, “He’s a war hero because he was captured, I like people who weren’t captured.” After that year he voted against the President Trump’s attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act that caused the repeal to fail. This was particularly impressive because McCain had recently went through a surgery to remove a tumor and was recommended to stay home and rest.

Senator McCain was an American hero who put his country before himself and fought for his nation and represented the people of Arizona. We hope others in the Senate and his successors will be able to continue his legacy.