Senator John McCain's remarkable record of leadership embodies his unwavering lifetime commitment to service. The son and grandson of distinguished Navy Admirals, Senator McCain graduated from the Naval Academy in 1958, and served as a Naval aviator for 22 years, including in North Vietnam during the Vietnam War.
On October 26, 1967, during Senator McCain's 23rd bombing mission over North Vietnam, a missile struck his plane and forced him to eject, knocking him unconscious and breaking both his arms and his leg.
Senator McCain was taken as a prisoner of war into the now-infamous "Hanoi Hilton," where he was denied needed medical treatment and subjected to years of torture by the North Vietnamese. He spent much of his time as a prisoner of war in solitary confinement, aided by his faith and the friendships of his fellow POWs.
When he was finally released and able to return home years later, Senator McCain continued his service by regaining his naval flight status.
His last Navy duty assignment was to serve as the naval liaison to the United States Senate. He retired from the Navy in 1981. His naval honors include the Silver Star, Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart, and the Distinguished Flying Cross.
Senator McCain was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from Arizona in 1982 and elected to the United States Senate in 1986. He was the Republican Party's nominee for president in the 2008 election.
Over the course of his career, Senator McCain served as Chairman of the Senate Committees on Indian Affairs, Commerce, Science and Transportation, and most recently, Armed Services.
Senator McCain is survived by his wife, Cindy,
seven children and five grandchildren.
He was laid to rest at the U.S. Naval Academy Cemetery in Annapolis, Maryland.
Washington, D.C. Public Procession
September 1, 2018
United States Capitol to
Vietnam Veterans Memorial
U.S. Senator John Sidney McCain III was born on August 29, 1936 at Coco Solo Naval Air Station in the Panama Canal Zone to Lieutenant John S. "Jack" McCain Jr. and Roberta Wright McCain. The son and grandson of four star admirals, he was raised in the navy and in a tradition of military service that began before the American Revolution.
His grandfather, John S. McCain Sr., called "Sid" or "Slew," was the first of the family to attend the United States Naval Academy, and the first to become a naval aviator, earning his wings at the age of fifty. As a passed midshipman, he served in the Philippines on a gunboat skippered by Chester Nimitz, and sailed home to America on the flagship of Teddy Roosevelt's "Great White Fleet." The Senator's colorful great uncle, Brigadier General "Wild Bill" McCain was a West Point graduate, and served under General Pershing in Mexico. Another West Point graduate, General Henry Pinkney McCain, fought in the Battle of Manila, was adjutant general of the Army and established the selective service during World War One. Various McCains served in the armies of the Confederacy during the Civil War, one branch of the family having settled in the mid-19th Century on a plantation in Carrol County, Mississippi. An ancestor served on General Washington's staff, and Washington himself is the Senator's cousin many times removed.
The Senator was the second of Jack and Roberta McCain's three children, arriving after his older sister, Sandy, and before his younger brother, Joe. His early life was nomadic as the family accompanied his father to various duty stations.
Senator John McCain's remarkable record of leadership embody his lifetime commitment to service. In celebration of Senator McCain's service to others, please consider learning more about and supporting these two causes which were of critical importance to Senator McCain:
Senator John Sidney McCain III died at 4:28pm on August 25, 2018. With the Senator when he passed were his wife Cindy and their family. At his death, he had served the United States of America faithfully for sixty years.
I was in the far northern reaches of Canada on a wilderness river when Senator John McCain died. We got to our endpoint—Nahanni Butte—where there was internet connection, and I learned that he passed away a few days earlier. It was not a surprise, obviously. Friends had been keeping me posted about his struggles and diminished strength through the summer. Still, it was a very sad day when I heard the news.
Tributes at the U.S. Naval Academy Honoring Senator John McCain today by General David H. Petraeus and Jack McCain.
Through a lifetime commitment to service, John McCain touched the lives of people everywhere he traveled. People from every corner of the world have shared their memories and thoughts about Senator McCain and we invite you to read some of the scrolling messages below. Please share your own memories below.
My deepest condolences to Johns family and closest friends! I believe he was a man of utmost integrity! John is the reason I registered to vote. And the reason I continue to do so. I never thought it was that important until the 2008 election. He made me realize just how important it is to not only register but to actually go out and vote. He will forever be remembered not just to me but so many other people as well. May he rest in peace! And may God forever watch over us all!
-- Edward, Florida
I appreciate his service to our country -
-- David, California
A well-earned rest for you, John. Truly well-earned in the eyes of God and of men.
-- Marc of Contemplative Pathways, Philippines
Earth has no sorrow that Heaven cannot heal. May the Lord comfort you and your family during this your hour of bereavement. I pray that the Lord will keep you and your family in perfect peace. The Lord is our Shepherd we shall not want He is our shield and fortress; He will keep us for all hurt harm and danger. The Lord is our provider, keeper and maker of all that spiritually and diligently seek Him. I thank God for Senator John McCain, his service, his devotion to all mankind. There will never be another Senator John McCain, when God made Senator McCain He threw away the mold. Senator McCain had a heart of pure Gold a Spirit that he shared with all the people, whom he will never know that his spirit had touched. I was always impressed with Senator McCain. To God Be the Glory....
-- Marsha Gayle -, Arkansas
I worked for John McCain"s election in the Bay Area ,California .Met him briefly at at the College auditorium at DVC. I admired and hoped we would have a man like him leading our country.He lead our world !God bless him and give this family our love. His example will endure
-- Fernando, California
Thank you John McCain for your loyal service and the time you spent in in OUR HONOR. Rest in Peace.
-- dana, Florida
please accept my condolence
-- george, New York
A man and gentleman who had dignity, integrity and was persistent in accomplishing the many tasks he wanted to get done. He disagreed with many but for the good and well being of the American citizens and then died with courage and leaving us in a better place due to his accomplishments.
-- Tony, Wisconsin
A TRUE hero, may he Rest In Peace.
-- Thomas, Virginia
Death can never take a good man away, for in the hearts of the people he inspired, his legacy remains and continues throughout generations. Sen. John S. McCain will never be forgotten. May his soul rest in peace. Please accept my humble condolences.
-- Jean Marc, Belgium
May all of the U.S. will be comforted by memories of this true statesman. Sen. McCain was a hero and will be missed dearly.
-- Deborah, Washington, D.C.
In prayer for all and each one of John McCain in peace and comfort in the Lord Jesus Christ Holy Name Ask!! The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit AMEN
-- Mary, Kentucky
Thank you sir, for your service to our country. We honor and appreciate your sacrifices. Condolences to your Family and Friends.
-- Jean & David, California
My prayers to all his family and may he Rest In Peace . It would of been a great privilege to of meet such a man my condolences to all of his loved ones
-- Maria, California
John, May you Rest In Peace in heaven with God! You lived a life that shows the world what American is about! May God bless your family!
-- Jack, California
My warmest condolences to the McCain family. John has been an inspiration to me and my family. Any man who spent over five years at the Hanoi Hilton and provided leadership in the Senate is a true American hero. John will never be forgotten. His memory will live on. John McCain is my hero. God bless John and family.
-- Michael, New York
Semper Fidelis, John. You were always one of my heroes and held the ideals of our country to such a high esteem that I became a Republican back in the late 90s when I was a Marine. You will be sorry missed, but the marines at the gate to your next destination will will be happy to see you.
-- Miguel, Virginia
I related to Senator McCain because he was different from most in Congress. He put values and beliefs before political affiliations. He was the best within us. I am sad at our loss but rejoice that he will be rewarded and welcomed in heaven.
-- Jane, Tennessee
True Hero, Man of Honor, my family and I had the honor to meet and speak with the greatest American hero of our times!
-- Ali, California
Senator John McCain and his respect for the process always stood out to me. Although, I supported Barack Obama in 2008, He has always shown an excellent display of good characteristics and always stood for what he believed in regardless of being politically correct. His dedication to public service and to country is what I will always remember about him. The people of Arizona were lucky to have him as a Senator, I will miss him, I intend on reading his book and watching his past interviews. Senator McCain, I again, thank you for your service.
-- Nicholas, New Jersey
I am an independent and I voted for Senator McCain for president twice. He was the real thing. I will miss him terribly. Sheila, Massachusetts
-- sheila, Massachusetts
Knowing his character we voted for him in the primary against GW Bush and for him and Sarah Palin in 2008. What a man! Blessings on the Mc Cain family.
-- Donald and Marilyn, Ohio
I was one of the special forces that went in to get my brothers,we did not make it.It seames they new we were coming we lost many of our brothers that day John I do it again because of our fath for one another. REST IN PEACE. REST IN PEACE
-- WARREN, Arizona
We were very fortunate to be the beneficiaries of John McCain's courage, patriotism, and principled politics. May God bless John McCain and his family.
-- Robert, Maryland
Dear Family, I will always remember the wonderful eulogy delivered at the funeral of my beloved cousin, Col Bud Day. The association of these two heros was remarkable on earth and now eternal in heaven. Now they are both flying with the angels . May God be with and comfort you in your sorrow
-- Geraldine, Iowa
This is my tribute to an example of Values and Virtues of a Human Being. From a young age he understood that he could go far in service of our country- perhaps with an able help from his family. And as destiny and God would have it, he lands in a foreign country who could have none of his military values. And it is there where he learns that His Country is and should stand for much more that freedom, democracy, but for the benefit of all in this planet. And he matures his senses of Duty, Country, and Liberty, and Love, and Religion. Maturity came from pain and solitude and comparison of values and states of well being. A sense of team, collaboration, and mission and purpose took this young aviator to give true words to the words Hero, Senator, Father, Mentor, Husband, Son, and sailor of Legacy. RIP
-- Gus, California
A great american - thank you for your friendship to Germany - we will not forget. R.I.P.
-- Thomas, Germany
He will be missed. May he rest in peace.
-- Beverly, New York
Thanks for your service. From a Viet Nam veteran and welcome home.
-- glenn, Georgia
Forever my hero!
-- Bengi Poston, Texas
HERO Above Them All. While he might not have agreed with every person, he respected them all. He saw the best in everyone and spoke the truth as he knew it. God Bless John McCain.
-- Lawrence, Virginia
Thank you for your service to our country, Sir. May His Grace and Blessings be bestowed on your family. A true patriot and leader...
-- Kathy, Virginia
To those who loved Senator/war hero, John McCain, and were loved by him: Henley's poem 'Invictus' , intoned so beautifully by Bruno Huhn, is now playing in my heart and mind as I remember John McCain. He lived and died on his own terms. And he left this world better than he found it. What more can one adk of a man?
-- Richard, New York
God Speed Senator John McCain. You are a great American and public servant. Thanks for all you have done for America and the world. YN1 Pamela C Ranberg, USN (Retired)
-- Pamela, Maryland
I served a tour of duty in Vietnam between 1968 and 1969 just after Tet. I was also stationed in Panama while Senator McCain' s father was the Base Commander at Amador, Canal Zone so the name and service of the McCain family has always been highly respected for their superb service to our country. Senator McCain will be missed more then we know. My deepest sympathy for his family and may he rest in peace - more then anyone I know, he earned it!
-- Edward, Nevada
He was the first person I ever contributed to for president and I was a dem at that time....he stood out for our country and military. ..He is sorely missed!
-- David, Illinois
I remember Sen. McCain at Wright State University introducing Gov. Sarah Palin as his running mate. It was a fun and optimistic time. I will always remember his patriotism.
-- Mary S, Ohio
I am so very sorry to hear of the Senators passing. His life of service and dedication to our Country Has left this Country a better place and he will always be a role model. My sincere sympathy and thoughts to his Family.
-- Bill, Pennsylvania
The last American hero. Honest, Brave, and Caring. He returned with Honor, and left with Honor.
-- Gregory, Michigan
We are sorry that we did not know you personally, it would have been and honor. Thank you Senator McCain for the role model you became for all Americans. The world is a much better place for the example you set. Our deepest sympathy to the McCain family and this nation. We have lost a great man.
-- Betty and Ralph, New York
John McCain is the only candidate for president that I, a life-long democrat, have financially supported.
-- Lawrence, Oregon
My friend simpre always Leo
-- Juan Leo, Maryland
rest in peace faithful servant. so grateful for you service.
-- Peter, Arizona
RIP, Senator McCain. Eternal rest grant unto him, Oh Lord. My deepest condolences to his family and friends. May you find peace in the memories you share.
-- Diane, Florida
Rest well, Mister McCain. You did well in your life.
-- Quan, California
Above and beyond his illustrious life and career, he was a prince of a guy. We loved him!
-- Cynthia, New York
Thank you for embodying American, and especially, Arizonian ideals. Even when tried, I've never felt you were disagreeable, but properly and rightly stubborn and principled. Rest in peace Senator.
-- Coltor, Arizona
Thank you for your service to our great Country! We honor you and miss you already
-- David, Florida
A am very sad over the loss of a great wonderful man. He will be so missed this incredible man.
-- Jill, Arizona
Senator John McCain was a great American patriot and statesman. We need more like him in today’s leadership. We extend our condolences to Mrs. McCain and all of the extended family. He was an inspiration to millions of Americans and a breath of fresh air in an era when vitriolic attacks are the norm. John McCain spoke truth and earned the right to do so by his military service and extraordinary service. He will be missed.
-- John, Kentucky
We are truly grateful for the outpouring of support and comfort our family has received during this time of
great loss. Your letters and messages remind us of the incredible impact John's life has had on so many people
from Arizona, across the country, and around the world. John lived every day with vigor, vitality, and an
insatiable desire to serve the country he deeply loved. While we've lost a central part of our family and an
irreplaceable American leader, we can all honor John's life by continuing his legacy of service and leaving
this world a better place for generations to come.
-- The McCain Family