= I knew that Gwen Walz and Elizabeth Edwards had formed a friendship on the campaign trail. Today, Gwen and her spouse, Congressman Tim Walz, issued this statement, released by the Walz campaign office:
“We are deeply saddened by the loss of Elizabeth. She was an inspiration to us and we were honored to call her a friend. Our thoughts and prayers are with her children.”
Below you will find a tribute Gwen penned after Elizabeth’s passing yesterday.
Elizabeth walked into our home and our hearts on a rainy day in September, 2004. Tim and I were hosting a discussion about military issues during the Presidential election. Elizabeth engaged in this discussion with a deep sense of awareness. She knew the issues and cared about the people. We were amazed at her genuineness. Elizabeth immediately felt like a dear friend.
Hope and I gave Elizabeth The Humanity bracelet. Elizabeth loved the words on each link: Hope, Courage, Truth, Family, Kindness, Passion, Loyalty. She wore the bracelet on campaign stops throughout the election in 2004 and after. I wear my bracelet regularly and am reminded of her. She loved words and knew their power.
Her influence on my view of the role of a political spouse has been profound. She was fearless in her advocacy of the issues and people about whom she cared. Elizabeth was never afraid to share her stories, lessons, and insights – it was a way she stayed true to herself, she said.
When Tim was elected to Congress in 2006, one of the first calls came from Elizabeth. She ended that call and many of those after with a comment about how proud she was to know and be associated with me. I was always humbled by her words. At the most unexpected times she would call. She knew the perfect thing to say – always. She was complete in her generosity of time and encouragement.
She is grace and dignity. I will profoundly miss her in the campaign of every day. Elizabeth was an inspiration and a friend. She signed notes, books, etc. to me “with love and affection. Elizabeth”
Good bye friend. With love and affection. Gwen
Photo: Elizabeth Edwards and the Walz family, 2004. Photo supplied.