ADM John Sidney McCain, Jr

ADM John Sidney McCain, Jr

Council Bluffs, Pottawattamie County, Iowa, USA
Death 22 Mar 1981 (aged 70)
At Sea
Burial Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA
Plot Section 3, Lot 4001-A map grid V-15
Memorial ID 8315 · View Source
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US Navy Admiral. The son of a four star Admiral, he would also rise to four-star Admiral rank, serving in World War II through the Vietnam War. Born the son of Navy officer John Sidney McCain Sr and Katherine Vaulx McCain in Council Bluffs, Iowa, he graduated from the US Naval Academy in 1931, and married the former Roberta Wright on January 21, 1933, in Tijuana, Mexico, on a spur of the moment decision. They would have three children: Jean (AKA Sandy), John S. 3rd, and Joseph Pinckney McCain. Their first son, named for his father, would follow in the footsteps of his father and grandfather, by first attending the US Naval Academy, then making a Navy career as a Naval Aviator. During World War II, Commander McCain commanded the submarine USS Gunnel during Operation Torch, the allied landings in North Africa in October 1942. He distinguished himself while enroute to North Africa when one by one, his diesel engines quit working (the engines were notorious for their numerous failures) and he kept going until he reached the sub's destination off North Africa, arriving with just a small auxiliary engine still working. The USS Gunnel was quickly refitted and transferred to the Pacific, where during the next two years, McCain sank several Japanese merchant ships, and twice attacked the Japanese aircraft carrier IJN Zuiho, narrowly missing the ship both times due to faulty torpedoes. After the war, he was assigned to the Office of the Chief of Naval Personnel, and then assumed command of Submarine Division 71. During the late 1950s to the mid-1960s, he served in a series of commands, including Amphibious Training, Chief of Naval Information, and Atlantic Sea Frontier. In 1967–1968, he was promoted to four star admiral and named Commander-in-Chief of US Naval Forces, Europe. The following year, during the Vietnam War, he was assigned as Commander-in-Chief of the Pacific Command, from 1968 to 1972, during which his son, a naval aviator, was shot down over North Vietnam and held as a Prisoner of War. He retired in 1972, and died while returning from a trip to Europe in March 1981, while aboard a military transport aircraft. His awards and decorations include the Navy Distinguished Service Medal, the Silver Star, the Legion of Merit and the Bronze Star. The US Navy honored him by naming the guided missile destroyer, USS John S. McCain (DDG-56).

Bio by: Kit and Morgan Benson

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US Navy
World War II



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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Added: 24 Jan 2000
  • Find a Grave Memorial 8315
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for ADM John Sidney McCain, Jr (17 Jan 1911–22 Mar 1981), Find a Grave Memorial no. 8315, citing Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .