Death by dentures? John McCain Sr.’s WWII battles with teeth, toilets

John Sidney “Slew” McCain defied the image of the senior naval officer. Bony, wizened, with a hooked nose and sunken cheeks, he turned 60 during World War II and looked at least 10 years older, according to naval historian E.B. Potter. He had a distinctive, herky-jerky gait that was easily identifiable aboard ship.

Despite graduating from the Naval Academy in 1906 at a lackluster class ranking of 79 out of 116 midshipmen, “There were few wiser or more competent officers in the Navy than Slew McCain, but whenever his name came up, somebody had a ridiculous story to tell about him — and many of the stories were true,” said Potter.

Death by Dentures?

Among the ridiculous? The then-vice admiral suffered mightily, as had his forefather George Washington, in the dentistry department.

Throughout his life, McCain had been chronically plagued by ill-fitting dentures.

And perhaps even more distinctive than…

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