Joe Biden and Meghan McCain shared a truly powerful emotional moment Wednesday morning on The View while discussing how cancer has affected their loved ones.
Biden’s son Beau passed away in 2015 from glioblastoma, a notoriously fast-growing brain cancer with a dramatically low survival rate. It’s the same cancer Meghan’s father, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), was diagnosed with earlier this year.
Already fighting back tears, McCain told the former vice president, “I couldn’t get through your book,” referring to Biden’s Promise Me, Dad, a memoir about his son’s battle with the deadly cancer. “I tried... I’m sorry.”
She continued, tears beginning to flow: “I think about Beau almost every day, and I was told—I’m sorry—that this doesn’t get easier, but you cultivate the tools to work with this. I know you and your family have been through a tragedy that I haven’t conceived of.”
Biden immediately began to console McCain, switching seats to be next to her, and holding her hand as she wept.
“Look, look, look... one of the things that gave Beau courage—my word—was John. You may remember when you were a little kid, your dad took care of my Beau. Your dad... became friends with Beau. And Beau talked about your dad’s courage—not about illness—but about his courage.”
He turned to the audience, still holding McCain’s hand, and attempted to offer some hope for anyone suffering from glioblastoma, “which is about as bad as it gets”: “There’s a lot of things happening... there’s breakthroughs that are occurring now... It could happen tomorrow.” Biden cited the University of Pennsylvania’s recent innovation of using immune cells to fight solid tumors.
“So there is hope,” he emphasized. “And if anyone can make it, your dad—her dad is one of my best friends.”
The pair joked about how Sen. McCain has gone after Biden “hammer and tong” in the past, but “I know if I picked up the phone tonight and called John McCain and said, ‘John, I’m at Second and Vine in Oshkosh, and I need your help. Come,’ he would get on a plane and come.”
Biden concluded: “The thing that I found—and Beau insisted on, your dad is going to insist on—is you’ve got to maintain hope. You have to have hope.”