(ABC NEWS) -- President Richard Nixon resigned 40 years ago Saturday, saying during his announcement that it would begin "that process of healing which is so desperately needed in America."
The 37th president faced the Watergate scandal shortly after his re-election in 1972. As almost certain impeachment approached, on August 8, 1974, Nixon announced he'd resign the next day.
"I would've preferred to carry through to the finish, whatever the personal agony it would've involved," he said.
President Gerald Ford took the oath of office on Aug. 9, 1974, after Nixon resigned.