John McCain’s 106-Year-Old Mother Roberta Honors Son as He Lies in State, Will Attend Memorial Services

U.S. Senator John McCain funeral
U.S. Senator John McCain Kym Smith/Newspix/Getty Images

In his honor. John McCain’s mother, Roberta McCain, honored her son as he lied in state in the capitol Rotunda on Friday, August 31.

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Roberta McCain, age 106, mother of the late US Senator John McCain, and granddaughter Meghan McCain attend the ceremony honoring Senator McCain at the US Capitol Rotunda on August 31, 2018 in Washington, DC.
Roberta McCain, age 106, mother of the late US Senator John McCain, and granddaughter Meghan McCain attend the ceremony honoring Senator McCain at the US Capitol Rotunda on August 31, 2018 in Washington, DC. CHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images

The 106-year-old — who lives in Washington, D.C., where the ceremony took place — held granddaughter Meghan McCain’s hand as the two women sat in the front row, near the late senator’s flag-draped casket. Vice president Mike Pence and his wife, Karen Pence, offered condolences to Roberta as they arrived.

Roberta is also expected to attend his memorial service at the National Cathedral in D.C. on Saturday, and will travel to the U.S. Naval Academy in Maryland, where Senator McCain will be buried following a private service on Sunday, September 2.

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The politician died on Saturday, August 25, at the age of 81 following a battle with glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer. His death came just one day after the McCain family announced that he would be stopping treatment.

The Navy academy vet — whose political career included two presidential runs, one against Barack Obama in 2008, as well as six terms as an Arizona senator — was celebrated in a memorial service on Thursday, August 30. Friends and family gathered at North Phoenix Baptist Church to reflect on the life and legacy of McCain.

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Former vice president Joe Biden, who was a close friend of McCain for more than four decades, gave an emotional eulogy in remembrance.

“My name is Joe Biden. I’m a Democrat, and I love John McCain,” the 75-year-old began his heartfelt tribute. “But the way I look at it, the way I thought about it, was that I always thought of John as a brother. We had a hell of a lot of family fights. We go back a long way.” Biden’s son also suffered from glioblastoma and died in 2015 at age 46.

The Phoenix service began with National Guard members carrying the casket into the church accompanied by his widow, Cindy, and their children Meghan, Jack, Jimmy and Bridget. The pair also shared children Douglas, Andrew and Sidney.

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