Anna 'Chickadee' Cardwell, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo Star, Dead At 29

Anna Marie Cardwell, better known as "Chickadee" on the reality series "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo," died on December 9, 2023, at the age of 29. She was the oldest of Mama June Shannon's four daughters, and had been diagnosed with Stage 4 adrenal carcinoma earlier in the year.

Her family took to Instagram to announce the tragic news. Shannon wrote, "With the breaking heart, we are announcing that @annamarie35 is no longer with us. She passed away in my home last night peacefully at 11:12 p.m. She gave one hell of a fight for 10 months she passed away with her family around her like she [wanted]."

Sister Alana Thompson, formerly known as "Honey Boo Boo," also shared what may have been the family's last professional group photo. Now in her first year of college studying for a nursing degree, Thompson mourned, "This is one post I wish I didn't have to make." She added in part, "I'm so glad that you waited til I was home to take your last breath! I would've loved for you to get to see me graduate college but I know you will forever cheer me on in heaven!"

Cardwell was the mother of two daughters, 11-year-old Kaitlyn and eight-year-old Kylee. Thompson asked fans to pray for the girls and for the entire family "as the next couple of days will make this all a reality." 

Mama June stepped up for her daughter

Mama June Shannon has had a tumultuous relationship with her daughters over the years, all stemming from her substance abuse issues and her association with toxic men. One of her boyfriends, Mark McDaniel, allegedly molested daughter Anna Cardwell when she was just eight; in 2014, Shannon was rumored to be dating McDaniel again. The reports caused a rift between mother and daughter, with Cardwell telling People she was hurt at the very thought her mom might be back with her abuser. In 2021, Cardwell made an appearance at sister Lauryn "Pumpkin" Efird's baby shower, but even then, she told The U.S. Sun, "You know, I've never had a conversation with her where she was like 'Oh I'm sorry for what happened' or, 'I'm sorry for this.' It's like she is always brushing everything off and acting like everything is fine."

But the months that followed saw a gradual return to healing. Cardwell, along with her three sisters, served as the bridal party when Shannon wed Justin Stroud in February 2023. Cardwell had just been diagnosed with advanced cancer at the time. Returning to mama bear mode, Shannon moved from Alabama to Georgia so she could help support her daughter through the grueling ordeal of chemotherapy rounds.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Anna's family made her last days special

Anna "Chickadee" Cardwell stayed upbeat for her fans, while dealing with her terminal diagnosis. According to UCLA Health, only 10-20% of patients with advanced adrenal cancer live past five years. By the time Cardwell was diagnosed, the disease had already spread to other organs, making it Stage 4. Cardwell's Instagram account shows fun candid shots of her daughters, their dog and cat, and her boyfriend, Eldridge Toney.

Family matriarch June Shannon was determined to make her daughter's last days memorable. In October 2023, Cardwell accompanied her mother, sister Lauryn "Pumpkin" Efird, and Efird's family to a local county fair. By this time, she needed a wheelchair to get around comfortably. "She was glad that she went, and we are glad she went with us," Shannon said in a video. "We did stuff as a family, and that's really what Anna wants to do." Then in late November, Cardwell, Efird, and their families joined Shannon on an outing to Gatlinburg, Tennessee. For several days, the clan shopped, barbecued, visited the aquarium, and admired the beautiful Christmas light display, which Shannon shared on TikTok

It was a memorable time for the family — and the last time they would spend with their Chickadee. Less than two weeks later, she passed away peacefully at home. "Fly high sweet angel," Efird wrote in an Insta Story. Second oldest sister Jessica Shannon added in part, "She will always be with us and we love and miss her already!!"