As I drove along on my way to do a few domestic chores the other day, I heard belatedly that Senator McCain had died. I pulled over and, God help me – I don’t know why, I wept briefly.

Part of it is that he and I and our families and friends share one thing in common, though his family has no idea that mine exists: That thing is incurable cancer. Whether or not it makes any logical sense, one does identify with others who are challenged by similar situations. So it really brings the inevitable into focus when the end comes to someone one admires.

I am not one to glom onto some notable individual and identify with them just because… . However, McCain is someone for whom I have respect. I won’t go into all the reasons as they have been the subject of far too many statements and stories already. I liked the man for what he said, how he said it, and the way he stood by it. I also liked him for the fact that he would admit that he felt he was wrong.

There is also a profound sadness when there is the loss of someone whom one respects at a time when there are so few others (if any) with similar characteristics. I don’t know, perhaps somewhere deep down this is one of those ‘flags in the sand’ that indicate the final loss off a breed, a kind, a type. Dare I say extinction?

All I can say for certain is that I actually had to stop and deal with the sadness. That is not something I do very often.

About Author:

Retired automation engineer (having had many roles leading up to that). Interested in agriculture, economics, cancer research, philosophy, embedded systems and SOC(System On Chip). Enjoy the family farm and my grandsons and playing around with Raspberry Pi and Arduino systems. A bit of web programming in Perl... growing plants.... and too many other things to list.

2 thoughts on “McCain

  1. I watched Mc Cains funeral yesterday and teared up myself. My dad was a WWII navy vet and respected the family long before his candidacy. My dad didn’t speak politics much, but McCain was his guy. He was disappointed Bush was the nominee in ’00. I know why my dad was drawn to him and I was for the same reasons. He spoke as openly about his mistakes as his accomplishments. I was interested in listening to Bush and Obama, but found myself much more moved by the raw emotion of his daughter’s eulogy. She made it very clear as to the type of man her father was and our president is not.
    I’m not sure if I’m wondering who will carry that mantle now, or if I fear that will be a forgotten era.

    1. I did not watch the whole thing, just snippets here and there after the fact. Funerals just are not my thing I guess. I understand you and your Dad. We see genuineness and respond to it. Mistakes don’t matter so much, it is how one responds to making one. McCain responded properly I think, and thus earned respect.

      I am not certain that what McCain was as a person is tied to an era. I think that every now and again, probabilities lead to someone (or sometimes many) being what McCain was and the opportunity for that someone to have an impact and then the temerity do so. Those three things coming together in one bundle is rare. And it is always hard-earned!

      I find it sad that McCain is such a contrast to those we see in similar leadership/representative positions. I also find it interesting that his background story is not the “I was born a poor white boy in the bad part of town” that gets used a lot. The guy came from a long history of those who were not poor, not uneducated…quite the opposite. And yet he still understood service to others. Pretty rare.

      Others like McCain will come along, it will be up to us to encourage them when we recognize them, hopefully raising the probability that they too will learn, grow, and serve like McCain did.

      Thanks so much for posting back Scott! I appreciate the point of view.

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