RIP John McCain

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Over the weekend this country lost a great man.  He was a POW.  He was a US Senator.  He was the Republican nominee for President in 2008.  He spoke his mind, even if it put him at odds with his own party.  He loved America.  I’m referring of course, to John McCain.  Even if you didn’t agree with his politics (and frequently I didn’t) you have to admit he was a great American.

I met John McCain in 2008 in Mason City Iowa.  He gave a passionate speech even though it was his last stop of a long day of campaigning.  He flat-out told one woman who disagreed with him “Well, I guess I’m not our candidate”.  That floored me.

The other than that stands out to me about meeting him was how old and frail he seemed that night.  He looked so very different from the man I’d seen on TV.

Clearly, I was wrong about his being weak.  Even though he lost the election he kept on in the Senate for 10 more years, even after his diagnosis of a terminal brain tumor.  He never asked for, or wanted sympathy from anyone and carried himself with dignity to the very end.

A couple of months ago I wrote about how sensible, old school Republicans were the only hope of the party lest it destroy itself from the inside.  If you missed that post you can find it here:

This weekend we lost one of the best examples of that kind of person.  I only hope John McCain’s example and his memory can inspire others to emulate his lifetime of service and humility no matter what side of any aisle they are on.

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