- Anna “Chickadee” Cardwell was a reality star who was diagnosed with stage 4 adrenal carcinoma.
- She was diagnosed in Jan. 2023.
- Her family, including her mom, Mama June Shannon, were by her side since she started getting treatment.
- On December 10, Mama June announced Anna’s death from cancer at the age of 29.
Anna “Chickadee” Cardwell made headlines in March 2023, when TMZ reported she was diagnosed with stage 4 adrenal carcinoma in Jan. 2023. After undergoing treatment for the disease and sharing moments from her health journey on Instagram, she sadly died at the age of 29 on December 9. Some of the photos she and her family shared during her battle showed her spending time with her mom, June “Mama June” Shannon, her daughter Kaitlyn, some of her siblings, including Alana “Honey Boo Boo” Thompson, and Lauren “Pumpkin” Efird, and her boyfriend Eldridge Toney.
Despite going through treatment, including three rounds of chemotherapy, Anna liked to keep her social media followers updated through not only posts, but livestreams as well. She tried to go live on TikTok every week when she was feeling well, and gave her supporters more details on her inspiring journey. One of her most recent videos on the popular app promoted one of her favorite chocolate snacks.
In July 2023, Mama June told Entertainment Tonight that the cancer was terminal. “For me, it’s an emotional rollercoaster sometimes. Mentally it’s always on my mind. We know it’s terminal. She’s stage 4. She’s not gonna go into remission. We’ve all accepted that, so I just tell people one day at a time ’cause you never know.”
“She just wants to see how it’s gonna go,” Mama June said of Anna’s attitude facing this prognosis. After four rounds of chemo, the next step would be immune therapy of clinical trials, but at this stage, Anna may choose an end-of-life option and live out her days as best as she can. “We don’t know what to expect because the cancer is very aggressive and it grew from nothing to something huge on the left side of her body really fast,” said her mother.
Find out more about Anna’s health journey below.
Anna “Chickadee” Cardwell Diagnosed With Cancer
Anna was first diagnosed with stage 4 adrenal carcinoma in Jan. 2023, but she didn’t publicly announce the diagnosis until March 2023. Anna’s little sister, Honey Boo Boo confirmed the tough news in a message on her Instagram story shortly after TMZ reported on it. “& this is what I mean when I say you never truly know what somebody is going through at home,” she wrote via Instagram stories. “No matter how famous they are. Yes, I’m very famous but normal sh*** happens to me and my family & y’all need to realize that asap.”
Since it was reported, she has been regularly posting about her illness and how she’s being treated. In May, she revealed that she was going on to round three of chemotherapy and was doing good. She posted a photo of her and Eldridge alongside the details. She wore a blue headwrap and put on a silly face as her beau, who wore a black T-shirt and hat, also got lighthearted with his facial expression.
“Well going on to round 3 of chemo. this yesterday it was pretty good day but did get a little and Cracker Barrel was good going down but not up 😂 but over all it’s going good and chemo is working we come to find so things are looking good 😇😁😁🙏,” she wrote in the caption.
What Is Adrenal Carcinoma?
Adrenal carcinoma is “a rare disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the outer layer of the adrenal gland,” according to the National Cancer Institute. There are certain factors that make this kind of cancer more of a risk in some people. They include having certain genetic conditions like Li-Fraumeni syndrome, Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome, and Carney complex. One noted symptom of adrenal carcinoma is having pain in the abdomen, and as far as how doctors diagnose it, there are blood and urine tests involved.
When it comes to the prognosis of this kind of cancer, it depends on a number of factors, including the stage the patient is at, the age and general health of the patient, and the treatment given. Anna was diagnosed with stage 4 of the disease, which means “the tumor may have spread to nearby lymph nodes and has spread to other parts of the body, such as the lung, bone, or peritoneum,” the National Cancer Institute says.
Treatment for this kind of cancer involves various options, including surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. A doctor will make suggestions for the type of treatment they believe will be most effective and most appropriate for the individual patient. Other new types of treatment still being tested include immunotherapy and targeted therapy.
How Long Was Anna Cardwell Sick?
Anna was first diagnosed in Jan. 2023 and passed away in December. She had been receiving chemotherapy treatment since her diagnosis and had told fans it was going well, through posts and livestreams on social media. She appeared in a photo with her mom, Mama June, in Apr. 2023, when the doting parent visited her in the hospital during one of her treatments. They both flashed a smile for the camera and appeared happy to be with each other. Her other family members also visited her during her health journey. Around the same time the photo was released, an insider told TMZ that Mama June was “stepping up” to be there for Anna during her illness.
“June and Anna were slowly working on building back their relationship about a year ago, but Anna’s recent stage 4 adrenal carcinoma diagnosis has rapidly brought the pair even closer,” the insider said. In May 2023, Anna shared a Facebook update that included photos from her 11-year-old daughter Kaitlyn’s elementary school graduation. They showed her and the family, including her younger daughter Kylee, 7, celebrating the little one’s big achievement, and she added a sweet message about the memorable moment.
“I am one proud mama right now, and I also can’t believe I am going to have a middle schooler and a second grader give me a minute while I go cry my eyes out 🥰🥰😭😭I am so proud of my girls and everything they have accomplished,” the message read.
On December 8, 2023, Mama June shared a video that gave an update on Anna’s condition. She asked followers for prayers as she and her family focused on making as many memories as possible with Anna and said she wouldn’t post again until “that time comes.”
When Did Anna Cardwell Pass Away?
Mama June announced Anna’s death on December 10, 2023. She shared a family photo to Instagram and added a heartbreaking caption to it. “With the breaking heart, we are announcing that @annamarie35 is no longer with us,” the grieving mom wrote. “She passed away in my home last night peacefully at 11:12 PM. She gave one hell of a fight for 10 months she passed away with her family around her like she won’t and we will will be updating y’all with more information as we get it today. We love y’all and continued prayers and thoughts for our family doing this difficult time.”