McCain flew an A-4 Sky Hawk on bombing mission over North Vietnam. Flying off and on the moving and pitching deck of an aircraft carrier is, in itself, a dangerous mission, and only the best Navy pilots are assigned that duty.
On his last missions his plane was hit by a ground-to-air missile and he ejected into a lake outside of Hanoi sustaining a broken leg. He was captured by North Vietnamese Regulars. His shoulder was smashed by a blow from a rifle butt and he was stabbed in the abdomen and the foot.
He was brutally interrogated for a number of days and it wasn’t until the North Vietnamese realized his father was an important admiral that he was given medical treatment. He was eventually transferred to a prison camp known as the Plantation
At the Plantation he was interrogated and brutally tortured. With his hands tied behind him he was hoisted off the floor and beaten, dislocating his shoulders in the process. Throughout this whole time, he kept faith with his fellow POW’s, the Navy and the United States of America. As a political ploy the North Vietnamese offered McCain an early release but McCain refused saying he would only accept a release if every pow captured before him was also released.
Mc Cain spent five years in the Hanoi POW camp, much of that time in isolation under mental and physical duress.
This man kept the faith and was an example to his band of brothers.
After his return and recovery McCain visited the Navy SERE (Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape) detachment where I was an instructor. It was my privilege to meet McCain and hear first hand his experience at the hands of the North Vietnamese.
This country owes a great debt to McCain and to all American Prisoners of War.
McCain’s funeral will be attended by Senators and Congresspersons and former Presidents; but the current President will be missing in action.
Our five times deferments, draft dodging, cowardly President has shown contempt for McCain. In an interview Trump said he had his own Vietnam like trauma by avoiding venereal disease from the women he had sex with. He stated that McCain (and by extension all American POW’s) were not heroes – that he liked men who weren’t captured. Trump ordered that the flag over the White House not be lowered to half-mass from the time of McCain’s death to his burial.
It is beyond my understanding how any man who has done military service or anyone that supports our men and women in the military can back this unpatriotic, insecure billionaire phony, that now inhabits the oval office.
58,479 military personnel died in Vietnam.