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Our readers write

We salute our hero Senator John McCain

by Danny Tran
(Editor's note: Danny Tran is a long-time contributor from Southern California. This story has been edited for length.)

I deeply admire Senator John McCain and would like to thank him for dedicating his whole life to the United States of America. He is a hero of the USA.

On a naval mission in 1967, McCain was a 31-year-old Navy pilot. He was shot down and parachuted to Truc Bach, Hanoi in North Vietnam. He was taken prisoner. He had broken an arm and a leg but the enemy did not take him to a hospital. As a result, he never regained full mobility in his arms and leg.

At that time, I was also an officer of the Republic of Vietnam's army and I fought in South Vietnam. We fought to oppose the Communists and bring freedom to my country. I was stunned by the news that some U.S. Navy pilots had been shot down over North Vietnam.

When John McCain was locked up in the Hoa Lo Prison in Hanoi, he was tortured and brutally beaten. When they found out he was the son of a famous admiral, they wanted to release him sooner than the other prisoners. But he insisted that those captured first should be the first to be set free.

When he was released from prison in 1973, he was concerned about saving the South Vietnamese prisoners of war.

He said he did not hold a grudge against the Communist government of Vietnam who had tormented him for five and a half years in Hoa Lo Prison.

After the war, he helped Vietnam with international relations with the United States. He wanted to help save the Vietnamese people from misery and poverty.

Senator John McCain is a great American hero, a great benefactor of Vietnamese refugees, and a savior for the Vietnam War veterans.

admiral - a commander of a fleet or naval squadron, or a naval officer of very high rank
beaten - struck, hit forcibly
benefactor - a person who gives money or other help to a person or cause
grudge - a persistent feeling of resentment resulting from a past insult or injury
locked up - behind locked doors
savior - a person who saves someone or something (especially a country or cause) from danger
set free - liberated
sooner - before
stunned - astonished, greatly surprised, shocked