McCain Funeral on Sunday
CBJ — The funeral for Arizona Senator John McCain will take place on Sunday, eight days after his passing at the age of 81. McCain would have turned 82 on Wednesday.
He was a one-time naval bomber pilot and was captured during the Vietnam War, where he spent more than five years in a prisoner of war camp before finally being released in 1973.
The following is an excerpt from a memoir he released in May:
“It’s been quite a ride. I’ve known great passions, seen amazing wonders, fought in a war, and helped make peace,” McCain wrote. “I’ve lived very well and I’ve been deprived of all comforts. I’ve been as lonely as a person can be and I’ve enjoyed the company of heroes. I’ve suffered the deepest despair and experienced the highest exultation.”I made a small place for myself in the story of America and the history of my times.”
McCain twice ran as the Republican nominee for the U.S. presidency — in 2000 and again in 2008, but lost to George W. Bush and Barack Obama, respectively. McCain later revealed that he wanted Democrat Joe Lieberman on his presidential ticket but caved to Republican party strategists who wanted him to select Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as part of a major rebrand in what was deemed a change election. It turned out to be one of McCain’s biggest regrets — not due to any direct insult towards Palin, but rather the chain of results it forced upon the entire campaign, which ultimately made him look weak.
McCain was diagnosed with an inoperable form of terminal brain cancer and began planning his funeral services over the past year. One of his requests was that President Donald Trump not be in attendance.
He spent the last 40 years of his life working in Washington, first as a Navy Senate liaison, then as a member of the House and finally as the occupant of the Senate seat he took over from Barry Goldwater, McCain was a conservative and a foreign policy hawk. His tireless work on campaign finance reform is what really cemented his political legacy in the senate.
McCain was married twice. He adopted his first wife Carol’s children Douglas and Andrew and they had a daughter together, named Sidney, who was born while he was in captivity. She did not meet her father until she was almost six years old.
In 1979 McCain began an affair with Cindy Hensley, who was 18 years his junior. After divorcing his first wife McCain married Hensley and had three children together — daughter Meghan in 1984, followed two years later by son John IV, and son James in 1988.
For his military service, he was awarded the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, the Legion of Merit, a Purple Heart and the Distinguished Flying Cross.
McCain will lie in state in both the Arizona Capitol and the U.S. Capitol Rotunda on Wednesday and Friday, respectively, before his burial at a private service in Annapolis on Sunday.