August 30, 2018
Former vice president Joseph R. Biden and NFL star Larry Fitzgerald hailed the late senator John McCain as an authentic American hero with a mix of tears and humor at a memorial service Thursday.
Biden, Larry Fitzgerald deliver tributes to John McCain at Phoenix memorial service
Biden and Fitzgerald headed a lineup of a half-dozen speakers at the memorial service at North Phoenix Baptist Church, which marked the second of five days of events celebrating the life of McCain, who died of brain cancer Saturday at age 81. The ceremony was attended by more than two-dozen of the Arizona Republican’s current and former Senate colleagues as well as former vice president Dan Quayle.
In what appeared to be a veiled swipe at President Trump, Biden said some believed McCain lived by “an ancient, antiquated code where honor, courage, character, integrity and duty mattered.”
“But the truth is, John’s code was ageless — is ageless,” Biden said. McCain’s code, he added, was “grounded in respect for decency and basic fairness and intolerance for the abuse of power.”
Biden and McCain served together in the Senate for more than two decades. The two foreign policy giants famously tangled on some of the most pressing national security issues. Yet their close friendship transcended their policy differences. Earlier this week, longtime McCain adviser Rick Davis said Biden is “basically being treated as a member of the family, which of course the family believes he is.”
Biden introduced himself simply as he took the stage and spoke for a half-hour. “My name is Joe Biden. I’m a Democrat. And I love John McCain,” he said, drawing laughs from the crowd.
He spoke emotionally of the “relentless” and “unforgiving” brain cancer that took the life of McCain as well as of Biden’s own son, Beau, and of the late senator Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.).
“It takes so much from those we love and from the families who love them that in order to survive we have to remember how they lived, not how they died,” Biden said.
He told the crowd to “find your image of John and remember it,” whether it was the senator’s laugh or the look of joy on his face when he was about to “go to the floor of the Senate and start a fight.”
As he spoke about their shared outrage at the demise of bipartisanship in the Senate, Biden looked to his left and spoke directly to the current senators in attendance, delivering an impromptu lecture about the state of today’s Senate. “We both lamented watching it change,” he said.
Fitzgerald, who visited McCain’s former jail cell and the site where he was shot down in Vietnam, described the senator as someone who “celebrated differences” and who cared about “the substance of my heart, more so than where I came from.”
“I’m black; he was white. I’m young; he wasn’t so young. He lived with physical limitations brought on by war; I’m a professional athlete. He ran for president; I ran out of bounds. He was the epitome of toughness, and I do everything I can to avoid contact,” Fitzgerald said.
“While from very different worlds, we developed a meaningful friendship,” he added.
On Friday, McCain’s body will lie in state at the U.S. Capitol Rotunda. A memorial service will be conducted Saturday at Washington National Cathedral, where former presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush are among the expected speakers. McCain will be buried Sunday in a private funeral at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis.
Among the speakers on Thursday was Grant Woods, McCain’s former chief of staff, who retold one of the earliest anecdotes from the epic that was the senator’s life. It was about a prison guard in Vietnam who showed McCain unexpected kindness by loosening the painful ropes around his wrists and, much later in his imprisonment, drawing a cross in the dirt for him as a sort of Christmas gift.
He told other stories, too — about McCain, the bad driver, and McCain, the politician who knew how to apologize when he screwed up.
Woods concluded with an appeal to everyone in the room, and probably the country.
“In the end, this Republican, Democrat thing is not important,” he said. “We’re all Americans. John McCain believed in our Constitution. He would not stand by as people tried to trample it.”
“He kept the faith,” Woods concluded, and drew a cross on the stage with his shoe.
Ahead of the service Thursday morning, the line for people with tickets to sit in the public section wrapped halfway around the block-sized church. Almost everyone was dressed in their finest — suits, ties, dresses.
James Conklin, 70, was no different, except for his “veteran” ball cap and two medals from his Vietnam War service pinned to his black suit jacket. “I know what he went through,” Conklin said of the Arizona senator.
Conklin was a consistent McCain voter — for senator and president. He said he respects Biden, too, and is glad there will be a bipartisan display among the senators on the guest list. “I think we need to see more of it, but it will be great to see it today,” he said.
Half a block behind him in line, Tri Le and his wife, Helene Nguyen, waited with their own tickets. They had come from Mesa, Ariz., for the service, and moved from Vietnam a year ago. Le said they came seeking asylum, as he was a Christian pastor in Vietnam and had been arrested for practicing his faith.
Le was a child in the aftermath of the Vietnam War and only vaguely knew of stories about the famous American, captured by communists, who “loved his friends and refused to be released” until they were.
“I don’t talk about the bad side of the war,” Le said. “I love Americans. I love people who love Americans.” And so, he came to church.
Latest News
Top news around the world
Coronavirus Disease

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus.

Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more likely to develop serious illness.

Around the World

Celebrity News

> Latest News in Media

Watch It
Marriage Addiction, Big Ed Returns & Mailman Affair
October 26, 2021
-ToLxI1zOmw
Meg's Delivery, Ciara's Dinner & "DWTS" Horror Night
October 26, 2021
0W5ayUWdjho
Drew Barrymore & Ex Tom Green Reunite for 1st Time in 20 Years | E! News
October 26, 2021
U7lM-EPB9UA
Adam Levine addresses fan grabbing him during Maroon 5 performance | Page Six Celebrity News
October 27, 2021
81owF0TCJtI
Angelina Jolie says her kids can borrow ‘anything’ in her closet: ‘Take it’ | Page Six
October 27, 2021
xpjGjm8bnpo
Wendy Williams’ ex-husband Kevin Hunter is engaged to Sharina Hudson | Page Six Celebrity News
October 27, 2021
sqaYVw39mEU
The TMZ Celebrity Tour Meets the Fake De Niro | TMZ TV
October 26, 2021
KAgksJS0VfU
Tarek El Moussa And Heather Rae Young Get Married in Montecito | TMZ TV
October 26, 2021
WOVxOhxb8Gs
Alec Baldwin 'Rust' Actor Says Camera Was Protected During Shooting, Not Actors | TMZ
October 25, 2021
bASh7PtfiPU
Salma Hayek, Kit Harington and the cast of ‘Eternals’ Dish on Angelina Jolie’s Halloween Party
October 27, 2021
h05wj5x_pNo
Issa Rae and Yvonne Orji Dish on Season 5 of ‘Insecure’
October 22, 2021
KA7ZEjY3rvk
Kristen Stewart Opens Up on 'Eternals' LGBTQ Inclusion, Ruby Rose Battles with WarnerBros | The Take
October 21, 2021
7d3MFpaP2L8
TV Schedule
Late Night Show
Watch the latest shows of U.S. top comedians

Sports

Latest sport results, news, videos, interviews and comments
Latest Events
19
Nov
ASIAN CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Group H
Sydney FC - Shanghai SIPG
17
Nov
UEFA NATIONS LEAGUE A: Group Stage
Spain - Germany
14
Nov
UEFA NATIONS LEAGUE A: Group Stage
Germany - Ukraine
08
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Manchester City - Liverpool
08
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Arsenal - Aston Villa
08
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Valencia - Real Madrid
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
AC Milan - Verona
08
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
West Bromwich Albion - Tottenham Hotspur
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Bologna - Napoli
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Genoa - Roma
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Atalanta - Inter Milan
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Lazio - Juventus
08
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Bayer Leverkusen - Borussia Monchengladbach
08
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Leicester City - Wolves
08
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Wolfsburg - Hoffenheim
08
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Valladolid - Athletic Bilbao
08
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Levante - Alaves
08
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Sociedad - Granada CF
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Torino - Crotone
08
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Getafe - Villarreal
07
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Borussia Dortmund - Bayern Munich
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Everton - Manchester United
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Chelsea - Sheffield United
07
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Atletico Madrid - Cadiz
07
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Barcelona - Real Betis
07
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Augsburg - Hertha Berlin
07
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Stuttgart - Eintracht Frankfurt
07
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
RB Leipzig - SC Freiburg
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Rotherham - Preston NE
07
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Parma - Fiorentina
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Watford - Coventry
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Norwich City - Swansea City
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Blackburn - QPR
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Derby County - Barnsley
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Huddersfield - Luton
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Nottingham Forest - Wycombe Wanderers
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
West Ham United - Fulham
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Sheffield Wednesday - Millwall
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Brentford - Middlesbrough
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Birmingham - Bournemouth
07
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Sevilla - Osasuna
07
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Benevento - Spezia
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Crystal Palace - Leeds
04
Nov
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Group stage, Group G
Ferencvaros - Juventus
04
Nov
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Group stage, Group G
Barcelona - Dynamo K.
03
Nov
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Group stage, Group A
Salzburg - Bayern Munich
03
Nov
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Group stage, Group D
Atalanta - Liverpool
Find us on Instagram
at @feedimo to stay up to date with the latest.
Featured Video You Might Like
zWJ3MxW_HWA L1eLanNeZKg i1XRgbyUtOo -g9Qziqbif8 0vmRhiLHE2U JFCZUoa6MYE UfN5PCF5EUo 2PV55f3-UAg W3y9zuI_F64 -7qCxIccihU pQ9gcOoH9R8 g5MRDEXRk4k
Copyright © 2020 Feedimo. All Rights Reserved.