U.S. Sen. John McCain, who has battled a deadly form of brain cancer for more than a year, is ending medical treatment, his family said in a statement Friday.
The six-term senator from Arizona and 2008 Republican presidential nominee has been battling the cancer, known as glioblastoma, from his home near Sedona since December. His family and a team of caregivers have cared for McCain, 81, ever since.
“Last summer, Senator John McCain shared with Americans the news our family already knew: he had been diagnosed with an aggressive glioblastoma, and the prognosis was serious,” the statement said. ” In the year since, John has surpassed expectations for his survival.
“But the progress of disease and the inexorable advance of age render their verdict. With his usual strength of will, he has now chosen to discontinue medical treatment. Our family is immensely grateful for the support and kindness of all his caregivers over the last year, and for the continuing outpouring of concern and affection from John’s many friends and associates, and the many thousands of people who are keeping him in their prayers. God bless and thank you all.”
From his home, McCain has continued his Senate duties as much as he could, from his family home in northern Arizona, 2,200 miles away from Washington, D.C. There, he occasionally weighed in on policy and media reports via Twitter, issued official written statements as he deems necessary and receives staff briefings.
However, McCain could not cast Senate votes by proxy or in absentia.
The senator’s wife, Cindy, expressed her gratitude for those who have helped in her husband’s treatment. They have been married for 37 years.
“I love my husband with all of my heart,” she wrote on Twitter. “God bless everyone who has cared for my husband along this journey.”
McCain’s daughter, Meghan, also thanked supporters for the “love and generosity” they have shown her family over the past year.
“We could not have made it this far without you — you’ve given us strength to carry on.”
Family and friends have visited the McCain family at their Arizona home, including former Vice President Joe Biden, U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, of South Carolina, and other friends and associates who have worked on his various campaigns.
McCain’s 82nd birthday is on Aug. 29.
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