John McCain’s courage: we must demand it of our leaders

Greetings from the Ridge.

October 26, 1967. John McCain’s bomber was hit by a surface-to-air missile, destroying the right wing of the plane. McCain said that the aircraft immediately went into an “inverted, straight-down spin.” He ejected and the force of that ejection immediately broke his right leg and both his arms, knocking him unconscious. McCain landed in a lake and since he was covered with heavy equipment he sank straight to the bottom. He came to, kicked his way to the surface and with both arms broken managed to activate his life preserver with his teeth. The North Vietnamese fished him out of the water and began to tear at his clothes. One of the soldiers slammed a rifle butt into his shoulder, fracturing it. Another drove a bayonet into his stomach then his foot.
The Viet Cong learned that McCain’s father was an admiral in the Navy so they decided to give him medical care for propaganda purposes and in operating on his broken leg they permanently damaged several ligaments, giving him a limp to this day. The North Vietnamese thought they could gain some favor by offering him an early release from prison but he refused to be let go unless every man captured before him was released. The enemy refused. That’s when the torture began. &nbsp;&nbsp;<ahref="http://etypeservices.com/Cass%20County%20Star%20GazetteID497/"><spanstyl... 13px; color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">To view more, please log in or subscribe to the digital edition.</span></a></p>