BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Senator John McCain’s death from cancer on Saturday touched two Maryland politicians who knew him personally.

“John McCain stood up for principal and was not partisan. He would work with Democrats and Republicans. He bridged the gap. He, to me, represents the best of the U.S. Senate,” said Democratic Senator Ben Cardin.

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Republican Governor Larry Hogan said, “Senator McCain will forever remain one of the most valiant heroes our country has ever known. He has long stood as doing the right thing and putting principals over politics, especially when the going gets tough.”

And the going got tough during his year-long fight against cancer at the end, and especially during his five years of imprisonment and torture after being shot down over north Vietnam in 1967.

A Navy pilot, he was the third generation to graduate from the Naval Academy. In 2008, he returned to Annapolis while campaigning for president, and talked to supporters at Navy–Marine Corps Memorial Stadium about his time there.

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“In truth, my four years at the Naval Academy were not notable for exemplary virtue or academic achievement, but rather for the impressive catalog of demerits I managed to accumulate,” he said.

On Sunday, McCain’s funeral will be held at the Naval Academy’s chapel.

He will be buried in the Naval Academy’s cemetery, next to his life-long friend Admiral Chuck Larson.

There will be words of praise, but during that 2008 visit, he spoke for himself: “My accomplishments are more a testament to my country, the land of opportunity, than they are to me.”

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