Readers remember Elizabeth Edwards for her grace under fire
December 7th, 2010
06:54 PM ET

Readers remember Elizabeth Edwards for her grace under fire

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.

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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."

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soundoff (63 Responses)
  1. Ann Wideman

    My prayers and sympathy to Mrs. Edwards family in this time of sorrow. Thank you CNN for keeping us up to the minute on issues we care about.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • G. Brown

      I do wish and pray there is a heaven, and even more, I pray that when Elizabeth Edwards opened her eyes on the other side, she smiled and cried at the sight of seeing her son Wade.

      December 7, 2010 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Flynn M Fernandes

    May the angels welcome you to paradise, Elizabeth Edwards. Rest in Peace and thank YOU for working hard every day to the end to make this world a better place. My prayers are for your family especially your three children, and your friends who loved you dearly, that they, like you, may find peace and consolation in the faith you shared throughout life.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carole

      you said it all. She was a brave LADY and now I believe she is finally at peace with our Lord Jesus Christ

      December 8, 2010 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Alicia

    My heart and Prayers go out to you especially the kids they are so fortunate to have had such a courageous Mom, God Bless you and I know God will Sustain you.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:22 pm | Report abuse |
  4. maine liberal

    Sarah Palin can learn about grace, courage and humility from Elizabeth. For years her private life was under media and tabloid scrutiny. Elizabeth used her celebrity not for personal enrichment and monetary gain but to fight for those who coulodnt.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:22 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Numbaoneballa

    Rip . Too bad it wasn't John instead.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Barbara

      Truthfully, that was one of my thoughts and I was angry about it being her........ but I had to keep telling myself that God knows what He is doing.....we may not fully understand the order in which He takes people from our lives, but we can only accept His will.

      December 7, 2010 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
  6. bama

    May you rest in peace classy lady. To the Edwards family, I am so sorry for your loss. Stay strong, like your Mom.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:24 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Victoria

    I lost my dad was I was 11 years old. I am now 56 years old and have never gotten over the sorrow and longing for what could have been. I prayed for her children, although I am not religious. They will act brave but underneath they will have tremendous pain. It will help someday they know what their mother brought to the world; dignity, courage, the value of family, and how much a parents love is needed by all children. If you are lucky to have good parents who are still alive.......value them as many of us would give everything to have them back.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Vincent Bett

      I lost my dad to brain tumor at age 20 and i still feel the pain and loss to this day. I agree with you that we sholuld value our parents at all cost. I would do everything to get my dad back. To the Edward family, May God grant you peace and comfort.

      December 8, 2010 at 2:32 am | Report abuse |
  8. Mishie

    May God Bless Elizabeth Edward! Her grace and advocacy will certainly be missed. I hope her children realize what a significant mark she made in assisting in the fight for health care reform. I hope they find a cure to this deadly disease soon. I hate to hear about anyone suffering from this tragic disease.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Barbara

    I felt such true sorrow when I heard the news and I cannot possibly imagine how difficult the last years of her life were. For all her pain, suffering, grief, and loss, I know she is in a better place now. My heart aches for the children, though, who now have to live their life without their wonderful mother. Such sorrow for this happy time of year. Hopefully others can learn from the life lessons Elizabeth talked about and demonstrated. Not many people who have had such grace and poise through such a tumultuous time, getting hit from every angle.....and yet, she stood with her head held high. Such a loss for all of us.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
  10. mplaya

    May Elizabeth Edwards rest in peace. I lost my mom almost 17 years ago to breast cancer, she was 57, and although time passes it never gets easier. May her children know (as I do) that their mother's love will always be with them, she will always be watching and she has set the bar that much higher for all that are tested in the many ways that she was.
    Prayers to her family.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Helen Garcia

    Elizabeth was every woman. A women like me and like you, . A woman of unwavering, unconditional love for her God, her family and her causes. She was triumphant in her many tribulations. Hope was her shield against the darkness that at times seems overwhelming . My heart is heavy with sadness for the family she left behind and the many things she left undone. I am sure that heaven rejoiced today.
    All my prayers for the family, friends and the nation who appreciated her courage.
    Helen Garcia, Omaha, NE.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  12. John D.

    Your battle was heroic and your life memorable. May you rest in peace. All our prayers to your family and friends.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Zha51

    May God bless you and your family; You were definitely a class act. Blessings to you and your family. You have overcome all the troubles of this world. Rest in Peace. Say hello to my mother.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:49 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Leslie

    Dear Edwards family, may God wrap his loving arms around you and comfort your hearts as Elizabeth makes her journey to HIs kingdom. God bless.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
  15. jeniloohoo

    I had the pleasure of meeting this exceptional woman when she was on the campaign trail in 2002. If only we could all possess the grace, intelligence and humanity Elizabeth had. Truly, I believe this world would be a better place. I am terribly saddened, as so many are, by her loss. I pray for her children at this terrible time.

    December 7, 2010 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
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