Eldridge Toney, the husband of the late Anna “Chickadee” Cardwell, is opening up about his wife’s unwavering strength in her final days. Despite battling intense lower back pain and relying on numerous medications, Toney revealed exclusively to PEOPLE that the reality star maintained a stoic demeanor and exhibited incredible strength for the sake of their family.
While Cardwell projected a brave front for her loved ones, Toney reflects on the private moments they shared, revealing the difficulty of suppressing emotions when they were alone. On December 9, the Here Comes Honey Boo Boo alum succumbed to stage 4 adrenal carcinoma at the age of 29, less than a year after her diagnosis in January.
Mama June Shannon, Cardwell’s mother, announced her daughter’s passing on Instagram, accompanied by a family photograph and a heartfelt message. Shannon expressed her heartbreak, emphasizing Cardwell’s courageous 10-month battle and the peaceful nature of her passing.
Cardwell and Toney tied the knot in Wilkinson County, Georgia, on March 4, shortly after her diagnosis, recognizing the limited time they had together. Their relationship began in 2017, following Cardwell’s divorce from Michael Cardwell, her ex-husband and father of her daughters, Kylee Madison (born in 2015) and Kaitlyn Elizabeth (born in 2012).
Toney, deeply committed to honoring Cardwell’s memory, considers her daughters as his own. He pledged to fulfill his promise to Anna by ensuring that her children cherish the memory of their mother. Despite their initial vision of a long future together, Toney and Cardwell made a pact upon learning of her cancer diagnosis: to never go to bed angry and to appreciate each moment, understanding the unpredictability of tomorrow.
Reflecting on their relationship, Toney acknowledges Cardwell as his one true love and the person he was meant to grow old with. His love for her is enduring, and he emphasizes that there will never be another Anna in his life.