As Reported By CNN
(CNN)Whenever America was in a fight during his long lifetime, John McCain was in the thick of it.
McCain, who has died at the age of 81, was a naval bomber pilot, prisoner of war, conservative maverick, giant of the Senate, twice-defeated presidential candidate and an abrasive American hero with a twinkle in his eye.The Arizonan warrior politician, who survived plane crashes, several bouts of skin cancer and brushes with political oblivion, often seemed to be perpetually waging a race against time and his own mortality while striving to ensure that his five-and-a-half years as a Vietnam prisoner of war did not stand as the defining experience of his life.He spent his last few months out of the public eye in his adopted home state of Arizona, reflecting on the meaning of his life and accepting visits from a stream of friends and old political combatants.In a memoir published in May, McCain wrote that he hated to leave the world, but had no complaints.
“It’s been quite a ride. I’ve known great passions, seen amazing wonders, fought in a war, and helped make peace,” McCain wrote. “I’ve lived very well and I’ve been deprived of all comforts. I’ve been as lonely as a person can be and I’ve enjoyed the company of heroes. I’ve suffered the deepest despair and experienced the highest exultation.
By Guest Blogger, Yahtzeebutterfly
Rev. Senator Clementa Pinckney was both a strong, inspirational leader and a caring, compassionate servant to his community. It is my hope that he will be remembered in history books and during future Black History Months and also that his legacy will lead others to follow in his path.
Born July 30, 1973, in Beaufort, SC, Pinckney became a pastor at the age of 18 and a state representative at the age of 23. He was 27 when he became a state senator, a position he held until a white supremacist’s bullet took his life on June 17, 2015.
I watched a video where Rev. Pinckney explained to a group visiting the Mother Emanuel Church in Charleston why he chose to be both a pastor and a state legislator:
There are many people who say, “Why would you as a preacher, why would you as a pastor, be involved in public life?” And, I’ve already said it, but I’ll say it again. Our calling is not just within the walls of a congregation, but we are part of the life of the community in which the congregation resides.