McCain joined the NFL team during its game against the Washington Redskins in her first public appearance since her husband’s funeral earlier this month. She was welcomed on the field by the Cardinals’ captains for the opening coin toss, including wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald, a longtime friend of the McCain family.
The toss went in favor of the Cardinals.
Fitzgerald was among those who eulogized McCain at his funeral, speaking about his “meaningful friendship” with the late senator, whom the athlete said he “deeply” admired.
“He didn’t judge individuals based on the color of their skin, their gender, their backgrounds, their political affiliations or their bank accounts,” Fitzgerald said at the memorial service. “He evaluated them on the merits of their character and the countenance of their hearts.
Cindy McCain thanked the team on Twitter after the event, saying that “support for our family has been overwhelming” in recent weeks.
“We’re going to keep fighting for the America John believed in everyday,” she wrote.
Her comments echoed an op-ed piece she authored in USA Today last week in which she championed her husband’s legacy and urged others to follow in his footsteps.
“John McCain fought for others every day of his life, whether he was wearing a uniform or standing on the floor of the U.S. Senate,” McCain wrote. “With his passing, America inherently understood that this is the kind of leadership we want. That this is the kind of country we want to be. And that it is now up to us — all of us — to get into the arena and fight. Each of us must do something to fight for a greater cause.”
CORRECTION: A previous version of this story mistakenly said the Cardinals played the Denver Broncos on Sunday. They in fact played the Washington Redskins this week and the Broncos last week.