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Citadel News Service

For Release
February 5, 2002

Sen. John McCain to deliver Citadel commencement address

          U.S. Sen. John McCain will address the South Carolina Corps of Cadets during commencement on May 11.

          Because of his military background, McCain was a top choice of the senior class, which each year votes on who it wants to speak at graduation.

          "After September 11 and hearing from President George Bush on December 11, this is who we thought would best relate to the Corps of Cadets," said Cadet Brett Berry, president of the Class of 2002. "The Class of 2002 believes Sen. McCain embodies the essence of military and civilian service that The Citadel and the Corps of Cadets proudly serve."

          McCain is the ranking member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation. The son and grandson of prominent Navy admirals, McCain was born in the Panama Canal Zone in 1936. After graduating from the United States Naval Academy in 1958, he began a 22-year career as a Naval aviator.

          In 1967, he was shot down over Vietnam and held as a prisoner-of-war in Hanoi from 1967 to 1973, much of it in solitary confinement. He retired from the Navy as a captain in 1981. McCain's naval honors include the Silver Star, Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart and Distinguished Flying Cross.

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