Sadly, late last month we had to lay to rest John Mccain, a beloved Arizona Senator who sacrificed many things for this nation.
As a young man Mccain graduated from the Naval Academy in Annapolis. Soon after he became a pilot flying attack planes over Hanoi. This was when his plane was shot down in North Vietnam and the Vietnamese took Mccain as a prisoner of war. He was imprisoned for three years until he was released in 1973.
When Mccain came back to the United States he moved to Phoenix, Arizona and served two terms in the House of Representatives. After he served for the House he then went on to serve in the Senate where he got his nickname Maverick. In the next race for president Mccain took his chances in running for president. When he lost the election he returned to being Senator. After Mccain’s sixth time running for Senator he was diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumor, although he remained a voice in the Senate.
On Friday August 24, 2018, John Mccain announced that he was stopping his treatment for his brain cancer. A day later August 25, 2018 he died leaving behind 5 children and a wife.
But John Mccain did not leave without saying farewell. He told the people of America, “My fellow Americans, whom I have gratefully served for 60 years, and especially my fellow Arizonans, thank you for the privilege of serving you and for the rewarding life that service in uniform and in public office has allowed me to lead. I’ve tried to serve our country honorably. I’ve made mistakes, but I hope my love for America will be weighed favorably against them. I’ve often observed that I am the luckiest person on Earth. I feel that way even now as I prepare for the end of my life. I’ve loved my life, all of it.
“I’ve had experiences, adventures, friendships enough for ten satisfying lives and I am so thankful. Like most people, I have regrets but I would not trade a day of my life in good or bad times for the best day of anybody else’s. I owe the satisfaction to the love of my family. One man has never had a more loving wife or children he was prouder of than I am of mine. And I owe it to America to be connected with America’s causes, liberty, equal justice, respect for the dignity of all people brings happiness more sublime that life’s fleeting pleasures. Our identities and sense of worth are not circumscribed but are enlarged by serving good causes bigger than ourselves.
“Fellow Americans, that association has meant more to me than any other. I lived and died a proud American. We are citizens of the world’s greatest republic. A nation of ideals, not blood and soil. We are blessed and a blessing to humanity when we uphold and advance those ideals at home and in the world. We have helped liberate more people from tyranny and poverty than ever before in history. We have acquired great wealth and power in the progress. We weaken our greatness when we confuse our patriotism with rivalries that have sown resentment and hatred and violence in all the corners of the globe. We weaken it when we hide behind walls rather than tear them down, when we doubt the power of our ideals rather than trust them to be the great force for change they have always been. We are 325 million opinionated, vociferous individuals. We argue and compete and sometimes even vilify each other in our raucous public debates.
“But, we have always had so much more in common with each other than in disagreement. If only we remember that and give each other the benefit of the presumption that we all love our country, we’ll get through these challenging times. We will come through them stronger than before. We always do. Ten years ago, I had the privilege to concede defeat in the election for president. I want to end my farewell to you with heartfelt faith in Americans that I felt so powerfully that evening. I feel it powerfully still. Do not despair of our present difficulties, we believe always in the promise and greatness of America because nothing is inevitable here. Americans never quit, we never surrender, we never hide from history, we make history. Farewell fellow Americans. God bless you and god bless America.”