John McCain, senator and war hero, dies at 81

Elsewhere on Twitter, McCain's trying years in the military were noted among commemorators as a defining feature of the Vietnam War veteran's life. He was severely injured and spent more than five years as a prisoner of war.

According to McCain's website, he was elected to the House of Representatives in 1982 before being elected to the United States Senate in 1986. A conservative on most issues, he pushed for campaign finance reform and the effort to account for those missing in Vietnam. Senator McCain led a long struggle to remove "earmarks" or pork-barrel amendments from the American legislative process, annoying Republican and Democrats alike. He was praised by the political establishment for his pathfinding work to overhaul the campaign system but criticized for the sloppiness of his preparation in selecting Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska as his running mate.

FILE - In this December 1, 2017, file photo, Sen.

His daughter, Meghan McCain, said in a statement that "I was with my father at his end, as he was with me at my beginning".

McCain was a respected leader in the Senate, despite being labeled a maverick. someone who broke from Republican ranks when he felt principle was more important than party.

John McCain, a war hero who had a long career as a USA senator, died Saturday after battling brain cancer for more than a year. "Cancer's scary, and having someone like him who's been through so much tragedy to empathize and give his time, especially because he's one of the most powerful people on the planet". With his father a US Navy submarine commander and his grandfather an admiral, McCain follows their footsteps into a military career.

Four years later, McCain would run and win a seat in the Senate, replacing iconic Arizona Sen.

McCain announced he was diagnosed with brain cancer in July 2017, after doctors discovered an aggressive brain tumor called a glioblastoma. It's the same type of tumor that killed Sen. Edward Kennedy, in 2009.

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Notably just previous year, McCain was the decisive "no" on legislation to repeal the Affordable Care Act. McCain said he did NOT want Trump attending his funeral.

In this October 30, 2008 file photo, Republican presidential candidate Sen.

Even brain cancer didn't seem to scare McCain so much as it sobered and saddened him.

The life of the senator from Arizona marked the arc of this journey. He says McCain's "dogged patriotism and passion for country" made him an inspiration. Shortly before Election Day in 2016, McCain said he's rather cast his vote for another Republican, someone who's "qualified to be president". His passion and determination were unsurpassed in the U.S. Senate, and his moral compass was unfailing. The world will miss John McCain.

In New Hampshire that year, McCain defeated George W. Bush in an 18-point blowout, only to be pushed out of the race in SC. "He loved me, and I loved him", she wrote.

"John McCain was a man of deep conviction and a patriot of the highest order", said former president George W. Bush, whom McCain sought and failed to defeat in 2000 and succeed in 2008. His heroism inspires, his life shapes our character.

"I have had the most fortunate life of anybody you will ever talk to, and I have nothing but gratitude, gratitude and joy, because I've had the most fortunate life that anybody has ever had", he said.

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