Tribute to John McCain

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Aug 28, 2018 Comments Off on Tribute to John McCain R.H. Collins


John McCain has been a friend of mine and DALENPAC since 1982 and his first race for Congress.  His Dallas friends have been a key part of political support since then.  Every time I saw him he mentioned how John Tower had been a mentor and huge influence on him.  Our friend Carla Eudy of Forney  has been his fund raiser since 1992.

We have loved him and been mad at him all in the same
 year.  Through it all he has been a supporter of limited
 government, lower taxes and less intrusion in our lives.  He also realized that he wanted to make government work and be more responsive so he worked on many bi-partisan efforts.

1992 with Congressman Sam Johnson

His campaign for the GOP Presidential nomination in 2008 is a classic example of how tenacity and perseverance can lead to success. He wasn’t ultimately victorious  in his presidential bid but he was successful and that success should be celebrated. He started his campaign as the front runner but faltered early in the race.  He did not quit.  He downsized a big campaign and focused on  the New Hampshire primary and won it in an upset and then the nomination.

He had tireless energy.  I saw him at the Crescent Court Hotel that summer at a fund raiser, his 3rd of the day.  The line for pictures was long and as I
 walked up to him he recognized me as an old
 friend and gave me a hug (and after hundreds of pictures & flashes that day) and I said “Can you see?”  He said “Yes barely but we’re going on!”  All this with a twinkle in his bleary eyes.

When he was in Dallas in 2011 he told me 3 days before the stock market crash he was up 3 points on Barack Obama and 4 days after the crash he was down 5 and he lost by 5.

He never lost his passion and zest for life.  He made friends, then enemies then made enemies friends.  He was prickly and lovable all at the same time.  He loved the issues.  I met with him in 2008 to discuss education.  He said it was not an issue that he had dealt with much and wanted my opinion.  I told him “John we want the Secretary of Education’s money and not her opinion!  Educators know what to do just let them do it”!  He laughed, agreed and said that’s a good policy we’ll talk after the election.

He did not think conventionally so he could work with all sides to make something happen. When he spoke people listened.  He was a great Senator and would have been an outstanding President.  America will miss him.

Richard H. Collins