Cindy McCain pressed her face against the flag-draped casket of her husband, US Sen. John McCain, on Wednesday and several of his children sobbed during the first of two services for the statesman and former prisoner of war before he is taken for the last time from the state he has represented since the 1980s. The private service at the Arizona Capitol marked the first appearance of McCain's family members since the senator died Saturday of brain cancer, the AP reports. During the service, Gov. Doug Ducey remembered McCain as a senator and internationally known figure as well as a major figure in the history of Arizona. Former Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl also spoke, and Sen. Jeff Flake offered the benediction. Arizona National Guard members carried the casket into the Arizona State Capitol Museum rotunda, where McCain will lie in state.
Later in the afternoon, the Capitol will be open to the public to pay their respects. By the time the service ended and the rotunda was cleared, at least 100 people had already gathered outside to wait for the public viewing in 90-plus degree heat—even Democrats, one of whom told the AP McCain was a "real hero." The people, some of whom traveled from California to be there, took shelter from the hot sun under tents erected by security teams while volunteers filled coolers with ice and water bottles. The viewing later in the day will go on as long as people are waiting in line, said Rick Davis, McCain's former presidential campaign manager. Thursday morning will feature a procession through Phoenix on the way to a memorial service at North Phoenix Baptist Church, with the public invited to line the route along Interstate 17. From there, McCain will depart Arizona from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. Another viewing will be at the US Capitol on Friday, with a final memorial service at the Washington National Cathedral Saturday.
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