Elizabeth Edwards has died at age 61
Find a Conversation
|Tue, 12-07-2010 - 5:05pm|
Just heard this on the news:
After a six year battle with breast cancer, Elizabeth Edwards has died at age 61, according to ABC News' affiliate WRAL.
Earlier this week it was announced that Edwards, who had been admitted and then released from the hospital over Thanksgiving, had stopped all cancer treatment.
Edwards who is estranged from her husband and one-time presidential hopeful John Edwards, was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004.
"Elizabeth has been advised by her doctors that further treatment of her cancer would be unproductive," said a statement released by Edwards' family. "She is resting at home with family and friends."
A close friend of the Edwards family told ABC News that John Edwards was among those who were at her side during her final days. The friend described the environment at the house as warm and peaceful. The mood was sad, but also full of warm feelings too.
The friend said Elizabeth is not in pain, and is at peace with what is hapening. The children, the friend said, are doing "OK."
In a message on her Facebook page, Edwards wrote a moving message that hinted at her pending death.
"You all know that I have been sustained throughout my life by three saving graces – my family, my friends, and a faith in the power of resilience and hope," she wrote. "These graces have carried me through difficult times and they have brought more joy to the good times than I ever could have imagined."
"The days of our lives, for all of us, are numbered. We know that. And, yes, there are certainly times when we aren't able to muster as much strength and patience as we would like. It's called being human," wrote Edwards.
"But I have found that in the simple act of living with hope, and in the daily effort to have a positive impact in the world, the days I do have are made all the more meaningful and precious. And for that I am grateful."
Edwards cancer returned in 2007, when her husband was campaigning for the democratic presidential nomination.
John Edwards said at the time, "Her cancer is back. We are very optimistic about this."
"Her cancer is back. We are very optimistic about this," John Edwards said at the time.
But the stage four cancer was deemed incurable and within a year, Edwards was fighting another battle.
John Edwards' Relationship with Rielle Hunter
It was revealed that her husband had a sexual relationship with filmmaker Rielle Hunter.
Edwards recounted the situation her book, "Resilience," and spoke about the revelation with Oprah Winfrey.
"It was...it was just a really tough. That was a really tough night," she told Winfrey.
In January, the couple separated after 30 years of marriage after John admitted he had fathered a daughter with Hunter.
Born Mary Elizabeth Anania, Elizabeth Edwards grew up in Virginia as the daughter of a navy pilot.
She initially planned to teach literature, but ultimately pursued a law degree at the university of North Carolina, where she met John.
The couple had four children.
Their oldest, wade, was killed in an automobile accident in 1996 at the age of 16.
"When Wade died, it was -- it was a terrible burden," she said on Larry King Live. "But it also reminded you both of the fact that you needed to grab hold of each day. You couldn't -- you couldn't just take each day for granted."Children Are Top Priority
In recent years, Elizabeth authored two best-selling books and became a champion of causes involving poverty and cancer.
But always, she said, her children were her top priority: 28-year-old Cate, 12-year-old Emma Claire and 10-year-old Jack.
"It scares me the most that there's going to be a day that, you know, is likely to come before i wanted it to come where Ihave to tell these sweet children//goodbye, she said in a Nightline interview.
In an April 2008 interview with "Good Morning America's" Robin Roberts, she said wanted her children to be able to handle any situation that comes their way.