Family, presidents, politicians tweet condolences after McCain passes away

Aug 25, 2018, 7:10 PM | Updated: Aug 26, 2018, 10:53 pm

FILE - In this Aug. 30, 2008, file photo, former Republican presidential candidate, Sen. John McCai...

FILE - In this Aug. 30, 2008, file photo, former Republican presidential candidate, Sen. John McCain, right, introduces his daughter Meghan at a campaign stop in Washington, Pa. John McCain, the war hero who became the GOP's standard-bearer in the 2008 election, died Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. He was 81. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)

(AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)

PHOENIX — Family, two presidents and other politicians around the nation paid tribute to U.S. Sen. John McCain after his passing on Saturday evening.

He died of brain cancer at the age of 81.

McCain’s wife and daughter released remarks shortly after the death.

Cindy McCain, his wife, said he passed the way he lived.

His daughter, Meghan McCain, tweeted that her father “taught me how to live.”

Jack McCain said his father’s desire to help a “cause greater than himself” defined him.

U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake, who has served in the Senate since 2013, released a lengthy written piece in the Washington Post about his service and friendship with McCain.

It was titled “I am grateful for John McCain.”

Flake said he has never known Washington without him.

“Just as he taught the country the value of standing alone to do what is right, he taught me that as well,” Flake wrote.

He also wrote about McCain outside the office — traveling to Afghanistan to visit soldiers, checking in on a Democratic congressman with Parkinson’s disease, watching Oak Creek in Arizona.

“Today, I am grateful for John McCain,” Flake ends with. “I’m grateful for the long and meaningful miles he traveled, and for having the privilege of having traveled just a few of those miles with him.”

McCain’s influence was apparent from the highest branches of office. Every living president gave remarks about the Maverick.

Pres. Donald Trump tweeted his condolences to McCain’s family.

His wife, first lady Melania Trump, also gave her respects to the senator.

“Our thoughts, prayers and deepest sympathy to the McCain Family. Thank you Senator McCain for your service to the nation,” she said.

Pres. Barack Obama, McCain’s opponent in the 2008 Presidential elections, said that though they had differences, the two shared ideals.

Pres. George W. Bush released a statement on his presidential center’s website.

“Some lives are so vivid, it is difficult to imagine them ended. Some voices are so vibrant, it is hard to think of them stilled. John McCain was a man of deep conviction and a patriot of the highest order,” his statement said.

Pres. Bill Clinton and Secretary Hillary Clinton released a joint statement saying he was “never afraid to break the mold.”

“Senator John McCain believed that every citizen has a responsibility to make something of the freedoms given by our Constitution, and from his heroic service in the Navy to his 35 years in Congress, he lived by his creed every day.  He was a skilled, tough politician, as well as a trusted colleague alongside whom Hillary was honored to serve in the Senate.  He frequently put partisanship aside to do what he thought was best for the country, and was never afraid to break the mold if it was the right thing to do.  I will always be especially grateful for his leadership in our successful efforts to normalize relations with Vietnam.  Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Cindy, his mother, Roberta, his children, and his entire family.”

Vice presidents also remarked on McCain’s character and service.

Vice President Mike Pence tweeted in prayer and remembrance of McCain’s service.

Former vice president Joe Biden also released a statement, honoring McCain’s history as a prisoner of war and saying the veteran’s “impact on America hasn’t ended.”

Former vice president Dick Cheney said McCain “fought for a world that was safer.”

“John McCain served our nation with honor and distinction. He fought for a world that was safer and more free and sacrificed mightily for the nation he loved. Lynne and our family join me in sending our condolences and prayers to the McCain family,” he said.

Former Vice President Al Gore said he admired McCain from across the aisle.

McCain was internationally renowned. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said citizens of his country will also celebrate McCain’s life.

“Senator John McCain was an American patriot and hero whose sacrifices for his country, and lifetime of public service, were an inspiration to millions. Canadians join Americans tonight in celebrating his life and mourning his passing,” Trudeau said.

Sarah Palin, McCain’s 2008 running mate, reminded the nation that McCain “never took the easy path” and inspired others.

“Today we lost an American original. Sen. John McCain was a maverick and a fighter, never afraid to stand for his beliefs. John never took the easy path in life – and through sacrifice and suffering he inspired others to serve something greater than self. John McCain was my friend. I will remember the good times. My family and I send prayers for Cindy and the McCain family,” she said.

Several Arizona public figures released statements on McCain as well.

Ariz. Gov. Doug Ducey called for flags to be flown at half-mast and said the veteran brought America “above partisanship and challenged us to be great.”

U.S. Rep. Martha McSally gave her condolences to the McCain family.

Former state Senator Kelli Ward referenced McCain’s decades in service.

U.S. Rep. Kyrsten Sinema called McCain a patriot in a tweet.

U.S. Andy Biggs released several tweets honoring McCain.

U.S. Rep. Ruben Gallego tweeted a short statement and released a longer one.

“John McCain is a national hero. From Vietnam to the halls of Congress, Senator McCain served our country his entire life. In the way he lived, he set an example of courage, honor, and love of country that will inspire young Americans for generations to come.

“All of us, in Arizona and across our land, have lost a truly great public servant. My sincerest condolences to Senator McCain’s family and his loved ones on their loss.”

U.S. Rep Paul Gosar said McCain will always be remembered.

U.S. Rep. Tom O’Halleran mourned McCain in a statement, which included:

“Senator McCain held himself to the highest standards, and he is a model of leadership through true public service. His legacy is that of a fighter who always put his country and the American people first. He was well-known for reaching across the aisle, putting party aside to try to solve the challenges our nation faced. He had foresight and tackled tough issues head-on.”

State Sen. Steve Farley released a statement encompassed in five tweets, saying that “No one has served our nation and the state of Arizona with more conviction and purpose than Senator John McCain.”

Former U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords tweeted that there is “no equal” to McCain.

Former Phoenix mayor Greg Stanton said McCain is “ingrained in our state’s identity.”

National figures also released statements remembering McCain and expressing condolences to his family.

House Speaker Paul Ryan called McCain “a giant of our time.”

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced McCain’s death at the Republican Part of Kentucky’s Lincoln Dinner in Lexington, KY.

He also released a statement, according to the Associated Press.

“He was also a fascinating personality. He would occasionally be in a bad place with various members, including myself, and when this would blow over it was like nothing ever happened. He also had a wicked sense of humor and it made every tense moment come out better. So, we’re going to miss him a lot. We haven’t had him since December, and now we won’t have him again. I’m going to miss him a lot. He was a great friend.”

House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi tweeted a statement in which she referenced McCain’s integrity and humility.

In a pair of tweets, Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said he will propose a plan to rename the Russell Senate Office Building after the Maverick.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Pentagon Technologies in View 202...

Damon Allred

Pentagon Technologies to build $50 million semiconductor cleaning facility in Mesa

Construction is underway for a semiconductor equipment cleaning facility in southeast Mesa expected to open later this year.

17 minutes ago

Vice President Kamala Harris speaks on the 59th commemoration of the Bloody Sunday Selma bridge cro...

VP Kamala Harris to visit Phoenix day after president’s State of the Union address

Vice President Kamala Harris is coming to Phoenix this week, one day after President Joe Biden delivers his State of the Union address.

2 hours ago

(OdySea Aquarium PR photo)...

Mermaid Magic returns to OdySea Aquarium in Scottsdale for spring break

OdySea Aquarium is bringing back Mermaid Magic for a limited time from March 13-18, it announced last week.

5 hours ago

The Salvation Army closed its Tempe location on University Drive and Myrtle Avenue while renovation...

David Veenstra

Salvation Army closes Tempe location during renovations of new facility

The Salvation Army closed its Tempe location on University Drive and Myrtle Avenue while renovations are underway at its new facility.

5 hours ago

A sports fan checks odds at FanDuel Sportsbook in downtown Phoenix. (Cronkite News Photo)...

Brandon Brown/Phoenix Business Journal

Sports betting saw gains in Arizona in 2023, but not all sportsbooks shared in the surge

The sports betting market continued to grow in Arizona in 2023 with more than $6.57 billion wagered on sporting events in the state last year.

5 hours ago

Joe Elliott of Def Leppard performs on Sept. 21, 2019, in Las Vegas, Nevada....

Here are the shows set for Phoenix area’s biggest concert stages in 2024

Here are all the headline acts set to perform at the Phoenix area's large-scale concert venues in the coming months.

6 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.


Fiesta Bowl Foundation

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade is excitingly upon us

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade presented by Lerner & Rowe is upon us! The attraction honors Arizona and the history of the game.


Collins Comfort Masters

Avoid a potential emergency and get your home’s heating and furnace safety checked

With the weather getting colder throughout the Valley, the best time to make sure your heating is all up to date is now. 

Family, presidents, politicians tweet condolences after McCain passes away