Senator John McCain had his life, his inner fortitude, and his personal truth tested in more ways than most frail humans can even imagine, as pointed out on Twitter by former president, Barack Obama, in his tribute. The flag at the White House has already returned to full staff, while the Capitol and other buildings uphold honoring the late Senator McCain with flags at half-staff, fitting for his naval service of 20 years, followed by his more than three decades in Congress.

George H.W. Bush honored McCain as “a true patriot of the highest order,” and George W.

Bush will join Barack Obama in offering eulogies to John McCain at memorial services later this week on Thursday. A friend of more than 40 years, former vice president Joe Biden will speak at McCain's Arizona memorial service. The two former presidents were personally selected by McCain to offer their respects, and former president Jimmy Carter reflected on the “steadfast integrity” that governed John McCain’s personal and political conscience.

While official remarks from the Trump administration closed with the standard: “Our hearts and prayers are with you,” leaders from around the globe chose meaningful reflections and words to describe John McCain, as reported on August 26 by the Washington Post and on August 27 by CBS News.

Sen. McCain lost his physical battle with glioblastoma at 81 this past Saturday, August 25, but the impressions forged by his vision and integrity are eternal and unforgettable.

Crossing lines for the right causes

John McCain rightly earned his nickname of “Maverick” by frequently failing to toe his party line and making a habit of collaborating with lawmakers of differing politics.

He famously felt that a political opponent “does not have to be my enemy,” and he lived by that philosophy.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had no problem repeating the praise of McCain as “an American patriot,” and noted that his lifetime of public service and sacrifice to his country were “an inspiration to millions.” Prime Minister Scott Morrison of Australia assumed his office last Friday, but took time to note that John McCain was consistently devoted to fostering the alliance between the US and his country, and praised the senator as “a man of great courage and conviction.” Those words are a far cry from the testy telephone conversations with the previous prime minister and the current chief executive.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu noted that John McCain understood the history and the long-standing roots of US support for his nation, realizing that it was the late legislator’s “belief in democracy and freedom.” German Chancellor Angela Merkel makes no secret of her distaste for the policies and mannerisms that mark the Trump administration, lauding that McCain “was led by the firm conviction that the sense of all political work lies in service to freedom, democracy, and the rule of law.” German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas assured that European allies of the US can never forget the diligent efforts of John McCain, saying: “We will remember his voice.”

Heartfelt from Hanoi

The floodgate of tributes to John McCain lack nothing in terms of sincerity, much like the man himself, and among the most moving are the memorials being made at the US Embassy in Hanoi, Vietnam and at the monument marking where McCain parachuted from his Skyhawk, soon to be taken as a prisoner of war at the infamous “Hanoi Hilton.” For more than five years, McCain endured brutal beatings, both arms never being properly set after breaking, and a broken leg sustained in the ordeal.

He refused an offer of early release after it was discovered that his father was the commander of all Pacific operations, relating that he would only leave once all his fellow captives were released, per proper procedure. He frequently credited the men around him as the “true heroes” of his experience. They were the ones who fed and cared for him when he was unable to meet his own needs for survival, and he wanted to be buried as close as possible to his Annapolis classmate, Chuck Larson.

Tears, bouquets, and loving handprints cover the areas of commemoration now, as featured by CBS News, and Hanoi residents remembered McCain as a man who fought for peace in many countries, including their own.

In 1995, McCain and former senator and Secretary of State, John Kerry, were crucial catalysts in normalizing relations between the US and North Vietnam. McCain also focused on ensuring the freedom and humane treatment of wartime prisoners, and the closing of detention centers such as Guantanamo Bay.

Despite his horrific experience, John McCain never harbored any bitterness toward the people or the nation of his capture, where conditions of life and work are already strained. In his characteristic, self-effacing manner, McCain only mused that he “never understood” why the monument to him at True Bach Lake even existed or had any significance to local people. “There is no reason for me to hold a grudge or anger,” John McCain reiterated, realizing that the memory and evidence of the pain inflicted by merciless guards can never be erased. “There's no sense in me hating the Vietnamese...I hold no ill will towards them.”