The Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA), one of America’s largest veteran groups, broke its silence on Thursday after President Trump continued to attack the late Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), blasting his “inability to let a fellow Vietnam veteran rest in peace.”
“We are chagrined by the President’s inability to let a fellow Vietnam veteran rest in peace,” VVA National President John Rowan wrote in the letter. “Mr. Trump, it’s time to move on. Help us heal our Nation and honor those who have served and sacrificed.”
Vietnam Veterans of America to President Trump: Help us Heal our Nation
Statement by Vietnam Veterans of America National President John Rowan: On the eve of Vietnam Veterans Day, March 29, we are… https://t.co/zOiHueJHtx
— VVA (@VVAmerica) March 21, 2019
The letter, which did not mention McCain by name, noted the timing of Trump’s criticism ahead of National Vietnam War Veterans Day, March 29.
During a speech in Lima, Ohio, on Wednesday, Trump complained that he did not “get a thank you” for approving McCain’s funeral.
“I gave him the kind of funeral that he wanted, which as president, I had to approve,” he told a crowd at a campaign-style speech in Ohio. “I don’t care about this, I didn’t get ‘thank you’ that’s OK. We sent him on the way, but I wasn’t a fan of John McCain.”
The Washington National Cathedral on Thursday disputed Trump’s claim that he had to “approve” the funeral.
“Washington National Cathedral was honored to host the funeral service for Senator John McCain,” a cathedral spokesperson said in a statement to The Hill on Thursday. “All funerals and memorial services at the Cathedral are organized by the family of the deceased; only a state funeral for a former president involves consultation with government officials.”
“No funeral at the Cathedral requires the approval of the president or any other government official,” he added.
McCain died last August from an aggressive form of brain cancer.