The Latest: Mourners stand as McCain’s casket enters church
PHOENIX (AP) – The Latest on services for Sen. John McCain (all times local):
10:25 a.m. Sen. John McCain’s longtime chief of staff says the Arizona senator believed that “this Republican-Democrat thing is not that important.” Grant Woods said Thursday at McCain’s memorial service in Phoenix that the senator believed that in the end, we’re all Americans. He drew laughs with stories about McCain, including a time he got in hot water for calling retirement communities that he needed to woo when he first ran for office “seizure world.” Woods said everyone would miss McCain’s humor. He called McCain “America’s hero” and said the senator believed in the Constitution and worked to defend it.
10:15 a.m. Sen. John McCain’s daughter Bridget read a bible verse at her father’s memorial service in Phoenix before the longtime Arizona senator’s chief of staff started the speeches. Grant Woods drew laughs Thursday as he said McCain was a bad driver and would introduce Woods to new staff members by saying, ‘You’ll have to fire half of them.’ He said the 35 years he spent with McCain were a little harrowing, a little wild, a little crazy, but a lot of fun. Former Vice President Joe Biden and Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald are among other speakers at the church service.
10:05 a.m. People who packed a Phoenix church for Sen. John McCain’s memorial service have stood as his flag-draped casket was carried inside. The crowd of 3,500 inside stood silently as the casket was placed before a set of floral arrangements Thursday and McCain’s family entered behind it. Vice President Joe Biden and other speakers, including Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald, stood on stage. A pastor opened the service with a prayer and the Brophy Student Ensemble sang “Amazing Grace.”