John McCain

U.S. Senator, John McCain will participate in the Buffalo Chip’s annual Tribute to American Veterans and Active Duty Servicemen on Monday, Aug. 4

U.S. Senator, John McCain, of Arizona,  the presumptive Republican Party nominee for President of the United States in the upcoming 2008 election.  He will participate in the Buffalo Chip’s annual Tribute to American Veterans and Active Duty Servicemen on Monday, Aug. 4 during the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.

Sturgis Rally music fans will also be treated to concert performances by Kellie Pickler and Kid Rock the same night.

Many of those who come to the annual Sturgis Bike Week are veterans and active duty servicemen who will have a great appreciation for McCain’s family history of service to our country.

McCain's grandfather and father were the first pair of father/son Four-Star admirals in the United States Navy. In 1958, he graduated from the United States Naval Academy. He flew attack aircraft from carriers. In 1967, he narrowly escaped death in the Forrestal fire. Later, on his 23rd bombing mission over North Vietnam, he was shot down, badly injured, and was taken prisoner of by North Vietnam. He was a prisoner of war for five and a half years and endured torture before his release in 1973.

Buffalo Chip campers will appreciate McCain’s perserverence. In this year’s presidential campaign, McCain has staged a miraculous comeback to become the presumptive Republican nominee.

John McCain's capture and imprisonment began on October 26, 1967. His A-4E Skyhawk was shot down by a missile over Hanoi. He broke both arms and a leg, and nearly drowned when he parachuted into Truc Bach Lake in Hanoi.

He was attacked by a North Vietnamese mob that crushed his shoulder with a rifle butt, and bayoneted him.  Badly wounded, the North Vietnamese refused medical treatment, and continued beating him.

When the North Vietnamese discovered his father was an admiral they give him medical care.

After receiving marginal care he was taken to a different camp on the outskirts of Hanoi where he spent two years in solitary confinement.

After his father was named commander of all U.S. forces in the Vietnam theater, McCain was offered early release. The North Vietnamese had hoped to use the release for propaganda.  But McCain turned down the offer and said he would only accept if every man taken before him was released as well.