Gene Barton's recent letter belittles Sen. John McCain, which I find reprehensible ["McCain is not really a hero," Nov. 22].

McCain was a prisoner of war who was tortured and permanently maimed by his captors. He was a decorated combat pilot with many missions performed. To belittle him, as President Donald Trump has also done, is the same as belittling the men of the Bataan Death March.

McCain, as a senator and past candidate for president, is admired by both sides of the Senate for his courage in war, refusing special treatment offered him as the son of an admiral, and his service to his country in office.

If only other officeholders followed his example, including the president, who is a five-time draft dodger, and disrespectful of women.

Almeta Lebarre, Lakeland