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Roberta McCain

Roberta McCain (1912–2020), mother of Senator John McCain

by Kirk Fox

Roberta McCain, the mother of Senator John McCain, has died at the age of 108.

  • Died: Monday, October 12, 2020 (Who else died on October 12?)  
  • Details of Death: Died at the age of 108, her daughter-in-law Cindy McCain announced on Twitter.
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Military Family Matriarch

Roberta McCain, an oil heiress, was the matriarch of a well-known military family. She was married to John S. McCain Jr., a four-star Navy Admiral who was a commander of forces in the Pacific during the Vietnam War. Her father-in-law, John S. McCain Sr., was a four-star Navy Admiral who commanded forces in the Pacific during World War II. Her son John McCain, a Navy pilot whose plane was shot down in 1967 over Vietnam, endured both physical and mental torture for over five years as a POW. Roberta McCain did not make public statements while her son was in prison except for writing a letter shortly after he was captured to President Johnson expressing support for his policies in Vietnam. In 2008, she became a public figure, known for her honest and direct statements while speaking on behalf of her son John during his 2008 presidential campaign.  

On her longevity

“I don’t do anything I’m supposed to do. I don’t exercise and today, I’ve already eaten a half a box of caramel popcorn. Honey, I’ve had a dream life, and it was all luck.” —McCain in an interview with Vogue Magazine


What they said about her

Full Obituary: Washington Post

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