What McCain Wanted on His Tombstone

'He served his country'
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 26, 2018 8:13 AM CDT
Updated Aug 26, 2018 12:36 PM CDT
'Nation in Tears' Over McCain
With a police escort, a procession follows the hearse carrying the late Arizona Sen. John McCain along Interstate 17 on the way to Phoenix, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018, in Anthem, Ariz.   (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

John McCain is making his final journey. The hearse carrying the late senator's body left his Arizona ranch Saturday, making the journey to Phoenix in a police-escorted motorcade along a route that saw many of his constituents line up to pay their respects, reports the Arizona Republic. Services are to be held in Phoenix, the National Cathedral in Washington, DC, and Annapolis, Md., where he'll be buried at the US Naval Academy Cemetery. The latest on the death of the Senate's legendary Maverick:

  • Widow Cindy McCain tweeted that her husband of 38 years "passed the way he lived, on his own terms, surrounded by the people he loved, in the the place he loved best." "I was with my father at his end, as he was with me at my beginning," said daughter Meghan McCain in a statement, via Fox News. "Today the warrior enters his true and eternal life."
  • The New York Times notes that in 2015, the former POW had just become chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee. Asked in an interview what he'd want written on his tombstone, McCain had a quick answer: "He served his country."

  • Reuters rounds up a global and lengthy list of tributes, including from onetime rival former President Obama, who wrote that "few of us have been tested the way John once was, or required to show the kind of courage that he did." And from Nancy Pelosi: "The nation is in tears."
  • President Trump ordered flags at the White House lowered to half-staff on Saturday night in honor of his nemesis, reports USA Today.
  • "The other senator from Arizona" Jeff Flake writes in the Washington Post that his is "a title that comes with being in the shadow of a giant. It was like having an older brother to protect me. The guy nobody wants to mess with."
  • Fox News has a look at glioblastoma, the brutally fast-moving brain cancer that also took the lives of Ted Kennedy and Beau Biden.
  • Over at Vanity Fair, TA Frank calls him a onetime "favorite of left, right, and center," who "was a lot knottier than his champions care to admit, remaining unpredictable to the last. The battles within him between party acclaim and popular acclaim, expedience and principle, prudent courage and reckless courage seemed to keep raging."
  • The AP has the nine moments that made McCain here.
  • In McCain's last interview with 60 Minutes, he proclaims "I've had the best life."
(Read more John McCain stories.)

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