John McCain passes at 81

   Senator John McCain, a war hero, past presidential candidate and politician, passed away at age 81 from a malignant brain tumor, on August 25.

   McCain was at his Arizona home when he passed. His office released a statement confirming his passing was from a brain tumor, known as glioblastoma. McCain had been receiving treatment for it in the forms of radiation and chemotherapy since 2017.

   McCain, though he was very ill, made a last political move in the senate to cast his vote against repealing the Affordable Care Act.

   McCain is well known for more than his political moves, but also for his time spent as a naval aviator, serving more than 20 years as a military officer. In 1967, McCain was shot down over Hanoi, in Vietnam, and was badly injured.

   After being shot down he was held captive and tortured, a prisoner of war. He was beaten, malnourished, and put in solitary confinement. He attempted suicide twice and was significantly underweight.

   Though McCain was offered early release from imprisonment by North Vietnamese he declined. He would have had to leave behind the other captives he was held with. The enemy often offers early release to important officers to use for propaganda purposes.

   McCain was a prisoner of war for five and a half years, and would not be freed until 1973 after the Paris Peace Accords.

   McCain returned in poor physical and psychological condition after having been tortured for several years. McCain was so badly injured he was left permanently with the inability to lift his arms above his head. However, he continued fighting, going through physical rehabilitation and getting psychological aid.

   McCain did not stop there, eventually entering a career in politics, serving two terms in the House of Representatives and six terms in the Senate. McCain was a Republican, though he often defied party norms and voted alongside his Democratic peers.

   In 2000, McCain lost to George W. Bush, who would be elected President, as the Republican nominee for the Presidential Election.

   In 2008, McCain made a second attempt for the White House, eventually winning the Republican nomination for President. His running mate, Sarah Palin governor of Alaska, was alongside him, until their ultimate defeat against Barack Obama, 44th President of the United States.

   McCain continued in his spot as Senator thereafter, voting against his predecessors Affordable Care Act, and going on to endorse Mr. Mitt Romney for President in 2012, who lost in the end. In 2015 McCain became the Chairman of the Armed Services Committee.

   As the era of Donald Trump’s presidency arrived, McCain was one Republican to openly disapprove of his sometimes provocative statements, despite his past for outspoken insults.

   McCain in his 81 years of life was a war hero, naval aviator, senator, house representative, son, friend, father and husband. He was laid to rest beside his friend and classmate, Admiral Chuck Larson.

Kelsey Fitzpatrick
Staff Writer

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