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tv   Grant Woods at Sen. John Mc Cain Arizona Memorial Service  CSPAN  August 30, 2018 2:48pm-3:02pm EDT

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leaders will be gathering at the u.s. capitol at 11:00 eastern to offer remarks and a brief ceremony. at 1:00 p.m., senator mccain's body will lie in state will allow members of the public to pay their respects. saturday, cindy mccain will lay a wreath in honor of her husband's military service. at 10:00 a.m., we will be live at the national memorial at washington national cathedral. formers will include president george w. bush and barack obama. live coverage on c-span. a look at some of the giblets to former senator mccain from his funeral in phoenix, beginning with former chief of staff to john mccain when he served in the u.s. house. and i had8 years old, only been a public defender, a few years out of law school. for some reason john mccain asked me to be his chief of staff when he got elected.
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on my first day at 7:00 a.m., john mccain picked me up at my house. i went to the car and said, do you want me to drive? "no, i'm going to drive." i said i'm going to sit in the back seat. [laughter] -- "get inrt on this the car, boy, get in the car." for the next half-hour we talked about the football game the day before, whatever was in the news, politics, pulled a few jokes. at the same time it was really a lot of fun, and also quite terrifying because of his ridiculously bad driving. [laughter] he would get excited -- he drove like this anyway, get excited, start drifting off -- like, hello there? [laughter]
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we finally got where we were going, and i set them by the way, what are we doing? "i hired of the whole staff and i want you to meet them." ok, that is good. we went back to the car and all the staff came out and they were all waiting things and i said, they seem to be very nice. he said, "oh, you'll have to fire half of them." [laughter] what are you talking about? the staff wasp in waving. about one minute later, we went back by because he had gone the wrong way, of course. [laughter] waved again, and those two hours epitomized the next 35 years for me with john mccain. it was a little harrowing, little wild, little crazy. but a lot of fun, and the greatest honor of my life. i have people ask me all the
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time, did you know in the early years there was some and so special there? yes, absolutely, no question about it. the first time, it was in december over in my hometown of mesa, arizona. we were at a rotary club, and it was all men at that time. and you know, these are tough guys, kind of cynical about things, and here is this new guy in town. and one of them asked them since it was december, asked them, what about christmas in prison? and he told them a couple of stories from and he told them about one night when he was interrogated for quite a while long time and it did not go well for his captors, and they were upset with him, so they tied him up and tied the ropes tight. and it was very painful, and they left him there for the night. and some guard came in who he
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did not know, had never spoken to. and at 10:00 p.m., the guard walked in and loosened the ropes. at about 4:00 a.m., the guard came back and tightened them up again so he wouldn't get in trouble. and john did not know why that happened. but he found out a little clue a couple of weeks later before christmas when he was standing in the dirt yard and that guard walked up next to him. that guard did not say a word, sandal, his he drew a cross in the dirt and they looked at it for a minute, and then the guard rubbed it out and went on his way. and it was quiet in that room when john told that. and then he said, you know, on christmas eve, we celebrated. and we got together under this
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bare light bulb and we sang christmas carols. and we quoted bible verses that we could remember. and we told the gospel story to each other. and i guess just that image of this band of brothers together in this godforsaken place, singing to each other, and there at the front, our guy, john mccain. beaten up, but not down. singing his favorite christmas carol, "silent night, holy night, all is calm, all is bright. round young virgin, mother and child, holy infant, so tender and mild." the words seemed so far away
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from that place, but they lead -- lean on the faith of their fathers and their faith in each other, and their faith in their country. and their faith in god. i looked at him in that audience in my hometown. those were tough, independent guys. they were ranchers and farmers, and some cowboys, businessmen, entrepreneurs, and they were crying. because they saw in john mccain a little bit of what they hoped to see in themselves. they saw in john mccain the embodiment of values they hoped to see for their country. over the next few months and years, john got to know this place. and he fell in love with arizona. he loved the people, our diversity, our native american
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community, our hispanic culture, and he loved the place, in particular, the grand canyon. the colorado river, we floated down that twice together, and then he kept going back. he loved it. he hiked the canyon rim to rim. he loved sedona. he loved this place. and if john mccain fell in love with arizona, arizona fell in love with john mccain. we ran a lot of races here. a lot of elections. he never lost. never really very close. arizona loved him. we had one little blip one time when he ran for the senate the first time. he called me on the phone and goes, "well, boy, i think i might have screwed up." i go, why?
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he said, "i was talking to the students and they said, how come you are the only politician that comes down here? they only come to the retirement places. well, you guys don't vote. ok? [laughter] the other dudes vote like 100%, you know. [laughter] "you have to vote like they vote in seizure world." i said, you did not say that, did you? there is this big retirement community called leisure world. they were not really happy with their new nickname. [laughter] so john said, like he always said, "ok, i screwed up and we have to go out there." we. [laughter] so we went out and i remember, we drove in, and there was a 90-year-old guy in a golf cart
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right there giving us the finger. [laughter] and little did he know, we both said, that's great. we loved it. and john was like, good to see you, thank you. [laughter] so he went in and said, "sorry about that," and went to work. and guess what? i think he won 85-15 in that precinct. so, we are going to miss so many things about him here in our state. his leadership here on these important issues. we going to miss his sense of humor, his love of sports. he loved the teams, all of our teams. and when i say love them, i mean love them, non-stop. and sha you guys, gonzo ne. he really did. not a coincidence. he didn't become friends with just the best players, but with the best people.
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and he loved you guys. worry here in arizona about the bigger picture. and i hope that what he stood for will maybe get a renewed look in our country. that is what he would want. he would want us to -- ok, we recognize him now, but now, let's get to work. and i'm sure the vice president will talk about john and bipartisanship, but he believed end, thisat in the republican-democratic thing is not so important. we are all americans and we had to get to the point where we can work together as americans. his support of the military. i hope you members of congress will keep that strong. it was so important that he had their backs. and one other thing. john mccain believed in our constitution, and he stood for it, he fought for it every step
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of the way, so he would not stand by as people tried to trample the constitution, or the bill of rights, including the first amendment. he believed in the declaration of independence. when we proclaim to the world that every single human being is important, every single human being is precious, every single person in this world has the not because the government says so, but because god gave us that right. so john mccain, his entire life, stood by freedom fighters across the world. he was there figuratively and literally, by their side wherever they were, acknowledging their right to live free. road a long and winding that took him from that dirt yard in hanoi to the dirt back
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roads of hidden valley, but through it all he was resolute, he was courageous every step of the way. and in arizona he was our hero. i think you can see from this loveuring of support and mccain, that he was america's hero. senator john mccain from arizona . he served his country with honor. he fought the good fight. he finished the race. he kept the faith.
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now my friend, we can finish the song. "sleep in heavenly peace. peace." heavenly amen. [applause] those remarks a short time ago at the funeral for senator john mccain. this is a live picture at goldwater airbase in phoenix, where the motorcade of senator mccain is about to arrive for departure to washington dc. at plane is expected to land joint base andrews and maryland at 7:30 this evening. we will have live coverage of the departure when it takes place, here on c-span.


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