Wade Edwards Car Accident
December 12, 2010 by staff
Family and friends of Elizabeth Edwards remembered her Saturday as a wise policy, an idealistic law student who challenged the faculty and a matriarch who comforted his family even though she was dying of breast cancer.
Elisabeth’s eldest daughter, Cate, praised his mother, recalling her strength, grace and spirit of the recommendations of everything from clothing (there is always less regret wearing solid patterns) marriage (not not merely the first boy you ever met).
“She was a beacon for us all – a point of orientation where we all feel lost,” Cate Edwards said.
Edwards’s funeral drew hundreds of Edenton Street United Methodist Church, where she has already mourned his 16 year old son, Wade, after his death in a car accident in 1996. She was buried next to him during a private ceremony.
Speakers reflected on a multi-faceted personality: Edwards, 61, was an intellectual who went shopping for clothing at cheap prices like TJ Maxx, a competitor of fire without an ego and a public figure who has gained the confidence of private sector of almost everyone she met.
“There are no words that are good enough,” Cate Edwards said.
His obituary contained a passage from a letter from her mother spent years preparing to leave her children after she disappeared.
“I loved you the best way I knew,” said the letter. “All I really need is you, your love, your presence, to make my life complete.”
John Edwards, her ex-husband did not speak. The couple had four children together. John Edwards sat next to 28-year-old Cate, 12, Emma Claire and 10 years, Jack. They held hands as they followed the coffin into the sanctuary.
Their eldest daughter spoke of how her mother comforted those around her as she died – at least one point barely able to speak -. Then she held her daughter and John’s hands, looking back at each, repeating: “I’m OK, I ‘m OK.”
“It was much more worried about us than we were around her,” Cate Edwards said.
The memorial was attended by several politicians, including Senator John Kerry, who led the Democratic presidential ticket in 2004 that included John Edwards, and North Carolina, Governor Beverly Perdue.
Two longtime friends Elizabeth Edwards, and Glenn Bergenfield Hargrave McElroy, also gave praise.
McElroy spoke with admiration of the fiery woman who first became a close friend of the couple raised their young children, telling stories of expertise Edwards’s prosecution that the intelligence – from games company to sports trivia. She said Edwards has always been an optimist.
“She knew who she was. She never braked. She was unpretentious,” said McElroy.
Bergenfield described a woman he met in law school who challenged his teachers with a dynamic spirit and had “great world, is turning heads, foot-in-the-pole gorgeous” look. He told of stories about how she was strong, but also how it was down-to-earth, it was, air care for the alien, she met the disarmament campaign agents with simple language; crawling under a bed dorm to find clothes Cate was discarded.
“Nothing that she said publicly, as a mother, as author or as a friend – none of it was provided or supplied by me in any way,” he said.
Bergenfield Edwards describes as a close friend of him and his family; his children give advice and teach people around her to “live as it is important.”
One of the porters, Tyler Highsmith, was in the car Wade Edwards was driving when he died. He and three other carriers – Michael Lewis, Ellis and Roberts Charles Scarantino – were carrying the funeral Wade Edwards. Trevor Upham, who was recently hired for Cate Edwards, has also served as a pallbearer for Elizabeth Edwards.
Jennifer Palmieri, who was a senior advisor in presidential campaigns of John Edwards, said the funeral was open to the public because Elizabeth Edwards has always insisted on open campaign events – to the dismay of the staff who wanted to control the access. She never wanted the tickets issued even free ones.
Among those who gathered on a nearby street hours before the funeral was Barbara Fields, a resident of 65 years, Raleigh has never personally experienced, but Edwards was impressed by how she managed the adversity.
Fields, a survivor of breast cancer 10 years who wore a pink scarf with logos of breast cancer, said she found comfort in books and speeches by Edwards on the sleepless nights and fear that come the fight against the disease.
“She has just done with a quiet dignity,” Fields said.
Elizabeth Edwards was diagnosed with cancer in 2004, a day after the Kerry-Edwards ticket lost to George W. Bush in the presidential election this year. Doctors declared her cancer-free after treatment exhausting, but the disease returned in an incurable form in 2007. She died Tuesday.
His final years were tumultuous ones, made difficult by the binding of her husband and the eventual admission that he had had a child with his mistress. John and Elizabeth Edwards separated a year ago.
Associated Press writer Nedra Pickler contributed to this report.
Copyright © 2010 the Associated Press. All rights reserved.
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