On August 14, 2003, Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Dennis Hastert came to Mesa to personally present the Congressional Distinguished Service Medal to John Rhodes in a private ceremony. Sadly, by this time, Rhodes’s health had deteriorated sharply under the onslaught of a particularly virulent form of cancer. Less than two weeks later, on August 24, 2003, John J. Rhodes died peacefully at his home with Betty at his side. He was 86 years old.
The outpouring of tributes following John Rhodes’s death was astonishing. From the President of the United States to childhood friends, people mourned the loss of John Rhodes not only as a statesman and leader, but also as a friend, colleague, and mentor. Here you will find press coverage of John Rhodes’s passing and memorial service, including commentary on his career and achievements, as well as his eulogy.