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Vietnamese Californians Pay Respects To McCain

A Vietnamese group from Orange County, Calif., pays their respects near the casket of Sen. John McCain during a viewing at the Arizona Capitol on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2018, in Phoenix.
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong
A Vietnamese group from Orange County, Calif., pays their respects near the casket of Sen. John McCain during a viewing at the Arizona Capitol on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2018, in Phoenix.

A group of more than 80 Vietnamese residents came from Southern California on two buses to pay their respects to the late Sen. John McCain at a public viewing in Arizona.

The group wore specially made yellow T-shirts that said, “We salute our hero Senator John McCain.”

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Derrick Nguyen said a radio station in the Little Saigon community of Orange County announced it would provide bus transportation to the ceremony Wednesday. Nguyen, an attorney and a community organizer, said more than 100 people signed up but several stayed back because of the heat and timing.

McCain was beloved for his history of fighting alongside the South Vietnamese and for supporting the families of political detainees. Nguyen said in the 1990s, McCain pushed an amendment to a law that allowed for unmarried, adult children of detainees to come to the U.S.

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He says many families that “wouldn’t have made it to America made it here.”