John McCain’s mother, Roberta McCain, is still alive. Amazingly, McCain’s mom is 106-years-old.
Roberta McCain’s advanced age has brought some sadness: She has now outlived her son, who died on August 25, 2018 of brain cancer at the age of 81. “Roberta was his biggest supporter and the leader of his fan club. She was incredibly proud of him,” a source told People Magazine after John McCain’s death. “His mommy loved him. He knew that.”
Here’s what you need to know:
McCain’s Mom Was Aware That He Was Losing His Battle With Brain Cancer
Despite her advanced age, McCain’s mom was aware what was happening to her son.
John McCain’s mom was aware that he was losing his battle with brain cancer. “Roberta is 106, but she’s spunky,” a family friend told People Magazine shortly before John McCain died. “She knows he is ill.”
McCain’s parents married more than 84 years ago. They were married until Admiral McCain’s death in 1981 at age 70. In addition to the Senator, they had two other children, Jean Alexandra McCain, who was married to the late Navy Rear Admiral Henry S. Morgan Jr.; and actor Joseph P. McCain II.
The office of Arizona Senator John McCain announced on July 19, 2017 that the then-80-year-old was diagnosed with a brain tumor when he went in for surgery for a blood clot.
Roberta McCain Turned 106 Years Old in February 2018
Roberta McCain was born Roberta Wright on February 7, 1912 in Muskogee, Oklahoma. Her parents were Archibald Wright (1875-1971) and Myrtle Fletcher (1885-1972).
When Roberta celebrated her 105th birthday, McCain marked the occasion by sharing a video, seen above. “Happy 105th birthday to my wonderful mother Roberta – we love you mom,” McCain wrote.
Roberta’s granddaughter Meghan added, “Happy 105th Birthday to my incredible Nana (Roberta) McCain! You are an inspiration to me and so many others every day.”
McCain’s wife Cindy also marked the birthday milestone with a photo on Instagram.
Roberta also had a twin sister, Rowena Wright Willis. According to her obituary, Rowena died on August 6, 2011 at age 99. “She was remembered by all that met her. She kept her remarkable beauty throughout her life. All that knew her will miss her,” her obituary read.
Although their lives went in two very different directions, Rowena and Roberta remained close. In 2007, when they were 95, The New York Times featured their travels.
Roberta Was 20 When She & Admiral McCain Eloped to Tijuana
When Roberta was 20-years-old and still a junior at the University of Southern California, she married John Sidney McCain Jr., who had graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy less than two years prior. He was the son of Admiral John Sidney McCain, who served during World War II and died in 1945.
Admiral McCain Jr. died in 1981 at age 70 after lengthy service to the country. He was a commander during the Vietnam War, serving as Commander-In-Chief, Pacific Command while his son was a Prisoner of War in Hanoi. Both McCain’s father and grandfather are buried at Arlington National Cemetery and had Navy ships named after them. John McCain, of course, was a POW during the Vietnam war.
Admiral McCain and Roberta eloped to Tijuana, notes the New York Times. The young couple traveled the world during Admiral McCain’s service, which explains why McCain was born in U.S. territory in Panama.