John McCain, US senator and war hero, dies at 81


John McCain, a Republican senator and two-time contender for the office of the president of the United States, is dead.

McCain, aged 81, died on Saturday at his home in Arizona, the New York Times reports, quoting a statement from the deceased’s office.

“Senator John Sidney McCain III died at 4:28pm on August 25, 2018. With the senator when he passed were his wife Cindy and their family. At his death, he had served the United States of America faithfully for 60 years,” the statement read.

A native of Arizona, the war veteran and “hero” as he was known in his country, survived several bouts of skin and prostate cancer before succumbing to Glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer, which was diagnosed in July 2017.

McCain was brutally tortured by the North Vietnamese, spending five and a half years as a prisoner of war in the Hỏa Lò prison, dubbed the “Hanoi Hilton.”

McCain’s family had recently announced that the senator had decided to stop his cancer treatment.

“Last Summer, Senator John McCain shared with Americans the news our family already knew: he had been diagnosed with an aggressive glioblastoma, and the prognosis was serious. In the year since, John has surpassed expectations for his survival. But the progress of disease and the inexorable advance of age render their verdict. With his usual strength of will, he has now chosen to discontinue medical treatment,” the statement read.

In his political career which spanned three decades, the senator contested twice for the office of the president under the Republican Party.

His first defeat was in 2000 when he lost to George W. Bush and subsequently in 2008, when he lost to Barrack Obama, who later became the first black president of the US.

Cindy McCain, his wife, expressed her pain in a tweet.

“My heart is broken. I am so lucky to have lived the adventure of loving this incredible man for 38 years. He passed the way he lived, on his own terms, surrounded by the people he loved, in the the place he loved best,” she tweeted.

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