Elizabeth Edwards' death has prompted an outpouring of emotional responses from people whose lives have been touched by cancer and others who simply admired the grace with which she fought the disease.
Edwards died Tuesday morning in her Chapel Hill, North Carolina,¬†home after a 6-year battle with breast cancer, her family said Tuesday afternoon. Edwards had announced on Monday that she had given up treatment after doctors told her it would be "unproductive."
Within minutes of posting news of her death, our blog was flooded with readers' tributes.
"Rest in Peace Elizabeth...your grace through so many difficult times will always be remembered! May your Children find solace in knowing many of us are grieving with them!" one reader said.
"I'm saddened to hear of Elizabeth's sudden passing. My mother also died from cancer at age 62 and its a loss that forever changes your life. I pray for all of the Edwards Family that they will find comfort and strength and peace during this difficult time. Life is soo precious and every day that we are given is a gift! Let us all remember that..." another said.
In life, Edwards had multiple roles, including political wife, best-selling author, attorney and advocate for health care reform. But to many readers, she was remembered as a role model.
"Elizabeth truly set an amazing example not only for her children, but also for us all. She showed us how to be strong in the face of overwhelming adversity. Elizabeth also taught many of us the meaning of dedication, not only to family but also to one's faith. She proved that it is possible to speak your mind and defend your honor and do so gracefully. She's put up an amazing fight in many areas of her life. May she rest in peace. My deepest condolences to her family on their loss," one reader said.
Another reader put it in fewer words: "We will miss you, Elizabeth. You were a source of strength and inspiration to all women who are fighting this horrible, cruel disease. I hope you found peace."
Many seemed to connect with Edwards on a personal level, be it¬†as a¬†cancer survivor, an¬†embattled wife or grieving mother. Several comments referenced her son, Wade, who died in a car wreck in 1996.
"I imagine her son Wade was there to meet her and she is now surrounded with peace and love."
If readers had nothing but kind words for Edwards, the topic of her estranged husband, former¬†presidential candidate John Edwards,¬†provoked equally intense negative comments.
Some disparaged the former North Carolina senator for his affair with an aide that led to his separation from his wife. Most of those comments resulted in rebukes from others. ("For everyone wanting to post something negative about John Edwards, this is not about him. Don't cheapen her life and her death by mentioning their relationship.")
Then, there were those who chose to cast the marital strife as yet another example of Elizabeth Edwards' resilience and strength under fire.
"May she rest in peace. The woman handled politics, infidelity, cancer and death with poise and dignity."