Former aide calls Sen. McCain "authentic American hero"

PHOENIX (KSAZ) -- As news spread that Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) has decided to discontinue medical treatment for an aggressive form of brain cancer, a former aide of the senator spoke out about his former boss.

Wes Gullett, now a political consultant at OH Strategic Communications in Phoenix, served as an aide to Sen. McCain for seven years.
He's remained a close friend of the senator.

"We had lunch nine months ago, fall of last year," said Gullett. "I haven't seen him for a while."

To Gullett, Sen. McCain has always been an authentic American hero, like his fellow Republican, long-ago president Teddy Roosevelt.

"He was, actually. I mean, if you think about it, flying jets in Vietnam, pretty close to that, and landing on aircraft carriers and misbehaving at the naval academy, he still holds the record for the most demerits of any midshipman," said Gullett.

Gullett was asked what message he'd like to pass along to the senator.

"That I love him," said Gullett, barely able to hold back his emotions. "There are not very many people in the world that have had the impact that he has had, and even though he didn't get to be president, he got to be everything else."