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TODAY'S PAPER

The heroism of John McCain

The flag-draped casket bearing the remains of Sen. John McCain of Arizona, followed by his widow, Cindy McCain, upper right, for a farewell ceremony and public visitation on Friday in Washington. / AP / J. Scott Applewhite

John McCain was a hero who was not free to enjoy the sun or moon because he was held captive and tortured while defending our country. Yet, his life sheds the light of the moon and the sun on all of us. It shows us patriotism, decency and strength. It teaches us what America stands for [“Honoring a hero,” News, Aug. 27].

He took the microphone away from a woman who mischaracterized the background of his opponent during the 2008 presidential campaign. That is just one of his legacies. McCain taught us we can disagree. We cannot take revenge on our opponents and move on. We can be decent, kind Americans and be better if we follow his example.

Linda Posner, Merrick

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I wouldn’t have ever called Donald Trump a coward for having avoided military service to the country he professes to love through five deferments during the Vietnam War. He suggested that the only reason others considered John McCain a hero was because he was captured during the war.

Of course, McCain was already a hero for having risked his life by flying 23 missions over Vietnam. His capture didn’t make him a hero, but the beatings and torture he endured for 5 1⁄2 years did make him even more of one. Especially since he suffered a lot more physical and mental pain than Trump ever felt from the bone spurs that got him deferred. And most heroic was McCain’s principled refusal to accept early release. That’s why McCain captured the hearts of Americans in a way Trump never could.

Richard Siegelman, Plainview