John McCain is reportedly discontinuing medical treatment for an aggressive form of glioblastoma, his family said in a statement.
“In the year since [his diagnosis], 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.”
The statement continued: “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.”
Meghan McCain wrote on Twitter: “My family is deeply appreciative of all the love and generosity you have shown us during this past year. Thank you for all your continued support and prayers. We could not have made it this far without you – you’ve given us strength to carry on.”
McCain, 80, was diagnosed with a primary glioblastoma, a type of brain tumor, Mayo Clinic doctors directly involved in the senator’s care told CNN in July, 2017. The senator had undergone surgery to remove a blood clot, and lab results from that surgery confirmed the presence of brain cancer.
Cindy McCain, the senator’s wife, wrote in a tweet, “I love my husband with all of my heart. God bless everyone who has cared for my husband along this journey.”
Congressional leaders also offered their condolences, showing a rare moment of bipartisan sympathy for the Arizona Senator. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell called the news “very sad,” while House Speaker Paul Ryan tweeted, “The whole House is keeping John and his family in our prayers during this time.” Democratic Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer also tweeted his thoughts and prayers to the Senator and his family.
McCain is a senior United States Senator from Arizona and has held the seat since he was first elected in 1986. He was the Republican nominee for President of the United States in the 2008 election, which he lost to Barack Obama.
He was also a war hero, and Navy fighter pilot during the Vietnam War, according to History.com. He was taken prisoner after his plane was shot down, and he subsequently suffered five and a half years of torture and confinement before his release in 1973.
Glioblastoma is a particularly aggressive tumor that forms in the tissue of the brain and spinal cord, according to the American Brain Tumor Association.
McCain, a war hero, was first elected to the Senate in 1986. The Arizona Republican has reportedly been receiving treatment for the last year.