The longtime Arizona senator died in August 2018, one year after being diagnosed with glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer

By Georgia Slater
August 25, 2020 01:44 PM
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From left: Meghan, John and Cindy McCain
| Credit: Lorenzo Bevilaqua/Walt Disney Television/Getty; Stephane Cardinale/Corbis/Getty; Dominic Valente for The Washington Post/Getty

The McCain family is remembering late Sen. John McCain on the two-year anniversary of his death.

On Tuesday, daughter Meghan McCain and John's widow, Cindy McCain, posted moving tributes on social media.

The View co-host — who is expecting a child with husband Ben Domenech — posted a picture from 2017 of her and her father sitting side by side on a bench during a hike they took not long after his diagnosis.

"Two years today. 742 days. Miss you every single one," wrote Meghan, 35.

John was diagnosed with stage 4 glioblastoma, a rare and highly aggressive form of brain cancer, in July 2017. “I felt like a nuclear bomb went off in my life," Meghan said then. "I was a mess. I was barely functioning.”

She has been open, in the years since, about living with her grief and breaking down the social stigma she says is placed on the grieving.

Her dad died from brain cancer in August 2018 and she has since memorialized him on several holidays, including Father's Day.

Cindy — who recently celebrated what would have been their 40th wedding anniversary — wrote in a tribute to the senator that there "isn't one hour I don't think of you or one hour I don’t miss you."

She shared two different posts in memory of John, on Instagram and Twitter.

"It’s been 2 years today that we lost you. Your smile, your sense of humor, your intelligence, and laughter, but most of all your loyalty are what I miss," Cindy, 66, began her Instagram tribute. "Being quarantined up north where you chose to spend your last months has been loving, enlightening and also very difficult. I feel close to you, but also very alone sometimes. I know you are here because I feel it every day."

"Occasionally you remind me to buck up and move forward," Cindy wrote. "I won’t let you down, but oh god I miss you."

She continued, "I’m hiking to the top of the hill today to give you some flowers and to let you know how much I love you. Your beloved valley is still yours!"

On Twitter, she wrote: "I miss you more than I can say."

"You always remind me to stay strong, but it’s hard sometimes," she admitted. "I’m not the only one who misses you, this country misses your strength and honor, but we all will do our best to keep you legacy strong. I love you John."

In an essay for PEOPLE last year, a year after her husband's death, Cindy reflected on the unforgettable place John still holds in their family’s hearts.

“Our heaviest grief has subsided, which I’m sure would have prompted John to wisecrack, ‘It’s about time,’ ” she wrote. “It was a struggle at times to reach this point. I was so accustomed to sharing life with John, there were days when I felt overwhelmed by his absence, and the habits and little problems of ordinary life seemed a challenge.”

Cindy and John McCain (center, from left) with family
| Credit: Cindy McCain/Instagram

“But you learn it’s okay to not be okay every day. You learn to live with a broken heart, and the bad days become fewer, and the time in between richer and more meaningful,” Cindy wrote. “He occupied too huge a space in our lives ever to stop missing him entirely. But he expected us to get on with life and with the purposes that invest our lives with meaning and value.”

Marking the anniversary last year, Meghan described her dad's death as “the worst day of my life.”

“I lost my hero. I miss my father every single day, I will for the rest of my life,” she wrote on Twitter alongside a photo of her holding her dad’s hand.

“Grief is omnipresent and relentless," she wrote. "For every single person who has sent prayers, love & support to my family, we are truly grateful.”