Edwards ended his campaign for president the way it began more than a year ago, talking about a city still ravage by Hurricane Katrina.
Edwards said it's time to step aside so "history can blaze its path" in a campaign now left to Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.
"I'm here in New Orleans, the lower Ninth Ward, to announce I'm a candidate for the President of the United States," Edwards said December 28, 2006.
His run for the White House was off and running with a number of progressive policy ideas. Edwards was the first to offer a plan for universal health care, the first to call on congress to pull funding for the war, and he led the charge against lobbyists, saying they have too much power in Washington and need to be reigned in.
Then nearly three months later, there was a personal setback.
"Her cancer is back, it's largely confined in the bone, which is a good thing," Edwards said at a news conference in 2007.
The Edwards' made the announcement last March in Chapel Hill. Elizabeth's cancer had returned.
Doctors told the couple Elizabeth had stage four breast cancer that spread to a rib bone. Despite the diagnosis, they vowed to continue the presidential campaign.
"The campaign goes on, the campaign goes on strongly," Edwards said confidently.
In the months to follow, Edwards hit the campaign trail hard, highlighting poverty in America. He touted himself as the underdog of the race and vowed he would make the United States the country of the 21st century.
"I think an honest assessment would say among the three of us, I'm the underdog," Edwards said. "I'm fighting. I like that place. It's always worked very well for me. It's sort of the story of my life."
Heading into the first real test of the campaign, the Iowa Caucuses, it was nearly a three way tie between Edwards, Obama and Clinton.
Edwards finished second behind Obama, and he remained hopeful he could make a serious move to the top.
But things began to change just a week later in New Hampshire. Edwards finished a distant third behind Clinton and Obama. He also finished third in Nevada but mad it clear he planned to go "all the way" to the convention.
When asked if he would continue his campaign if he lost the S.C. primary, Edwards said, "because of the cause that I am in, for all of these families that are struggling, that don't have health care, for the future of the middle class, I'm through this the convention to the White House."
But the biggest blow to the campaign came Saturday, Jan. 26 in the place where Edwards was born -- South Carolina.
Another third place finish in the place he won four years ago. And the final setback -- a distant third place finish in Florida on Jan. 30.
Edwards has not endorsed Obama or Clinton in what is now a two person race for the democratic nomination.
Wednesday he told reporters he'll meet with both Clinton and Obama before making a decision.