The Mob Wives star passed away early Thursday morning. She was 55 years old.
“It is with sad regret that we inform you that at 3:01 a.m. Angelia Raiola peacefully ended her battle with cancer, and was called home,” the statement, which was posted on Twitter, read. “She was surrounded by nothing but love from her immediate family, and the closest friends. YOU, (her fans) were some of the most special people in the world, and she loved you immensely. Thank you for your love, prayers, and unconditional support of Angela right to the very end.”
Big Ang’s rep, Jennifer Graziano, released a statement on behalf of the family, too. “I am saddened to say that At 3:01 am Ang lost her battle with cancer. She passed peacefully surrounded by friends and family. My heart is broken for her whole family – especially her children and grandchildren and I will never forget her. Her presence brought sheer happiness to anyone that was around her and I am honored to have called her a friend. Please respect her family’s privacy at this time as they mourn the loss of such an amazing woman.”
The death comes after the reality star faced many hurdles in her health including stage 4 lung and brain cancer. In fact, Janine Detore created a Gofundme page in early February to help fund her sister’s final treatments. She also updated fans on her family member’s condition.
“On January 26th the doctor reviewed her CT scan and informed us that the treatment was not working, and in fact one tumor grew larger and the other tumors had no change. We were advised that she would start immunotherapy the following week,” she wrote. “Well here we are at the emergency room waiting to see why her breathing is labored and the amount of pain she is having is by far more than she could handle.”
When later appearing on The Dr. Oz Show Feb. 16, Big Ang revealed the dire prognosis doctors had given her. Unfortunately, she only had a 30 percent chance of survival.
“It’s shocking what happened,” she shared. “First I thought I was cancer-free. I was gonna have a big celebration…and then a month later I was stage 4.”
Back in April 2015, Big Ang was hospitalized after doctors discovered a large throat tumor. She underwent surgery to try and remove the trouble spot. As a result, doctors told the reality star in October that she had beaten the disease. Ultimately, the cancer returned in December and had spread to her brain and right lung.
And while she was never one to shy away from a fun time or a dramatic sit-down with her co-stars, Big Ang had an incredible bond with her family including her sister, two children and grandchildren. One quick look at her social media will show how much the star loved her “inner circle.”
“There are no greater words to describe the bond that sisters have,” Big Ang wrote on Facebook after one of her surgeries. “My fans are the best, and I am blessed to have such wonderful people in my life.”
Our thoughts and prayers go out to Big Ang’s family during this difficult time.