The reality TV community lost another noteworthy personality. Angela "Big Ang" Raiola died early Thursday morning after a lengthy battle with cancer, ET has confirmed. She was 55.
Her friend Vinnie Medugno confirmed the news via Raiola's official Twitter handle, noting, the Mob Wives star "was called home." Though she was estranged from her husband, Neil Murphy, at the time, the sanitation worker posted a touching message on Twitter shortly after the news of her death.
"I will always love you forever please watch over the grandkids I know you will," he tweeted along with a broken heart emoji and a photo of himself with his late wife.
I will always love you forever please watch over the grandkids I know you will 💔 pic.twitter.com/HU99EHM4nf— Neil Murphy (@MrBigAngVH1) February 18, 2016
On Tuesday, Raiola told Dr. Oz that she had separated from her husband amid her ongoing cancer battle. "I felt like he never stepped up to the plate, so I was done with it," she revealed. "Now, it's too late. I would rather be by myself. I would rather be alone."
Raiola, however, was not alone when she passed. Instead, she was surrounded by friends and family. Meanwhile, several of Raiola's co-stars and celebrities have expressed their condolences online.
"We will always love you .. Forever and ever Angela," Renee Graziano, a friend and co-star, wrote on Instagram. "You are part of our family. #rip #withtheangels #inabetter place."
Co-star Marissa Jade tells ET, "I am extremely saddened by the news of Angela. My heart aches for her and her family. I understand what they are going through and how they feel because I have dealt with the same heartache of losing a loved one. She is no longer suffering. She was loved by many and will never be forgotten. Rest in peace, beautiful Angel."
Carla Facciolo tells ET that Big Ang was set on returning to the VH1 reality show, despite her condition.
"[She] was saying 'I don't care if I'm sick!'" Facciolo tells ET of her final visit to see Raiola last Thursday. "I was so happy. She was so happy all the girls were there with her. She was in great spirits... I'll miss so much about her, but mostly her free spirit."
Jersey Shore alum Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi Instagrammed a photo with Raiola, writing, "Such a beautiful soul taking so quickly …we all love you big Ang. You're contagious personality will live on forever my love ! Prayers for her family."
RIP Big Ang. Thoughts and prayers go out to her family. pic.twitter.com/dw7yqmMW9D— tabatha coffey (@tabathacoffey) February 18, 2016
Big Ang was a larger-than-life personality that lit up every room she entered. She'll be sorely missed. https://t.co/PKeYNLAv3T— Dr. Mehmet Oz (@DrOz) February 18, 2016
My heart goes out to the family of @biggangVH1 so so sad, she was awesome, I love big ang forever— michelle visage (@michellevisage) February 18, 2016
Mob Wives creator Jennifer Graziano previously confirmed the loss to ET, saying, "I am saddened to say that at 3:01 a.m. (ET) Ang lost her battle with cancer. She passed away 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."
Raiola found a lemon-sized tumor in her throat in March 2015, and had it removed. In June she underwent the same procedure on the right side of her throat, but was later diagnosed with stage 4 brain and lung cancer.