Neil Murphy, Mob Wives star Angela “Big Ang” Raiola’s husband, has publicly reacted to her passing. Early Thursday morning, Neil tweeted that he will always love Big Ang. He asked that she watch over their grandchildren and ended the tweet with a broken heart emoji. Attached to the tweet is a photo of him and Big Ang leaning in towards one another and smiling while sitting in a booth. Christmas decorations are in the background.
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
Many people replied to Neil’s tweet to send their condolences to him and his family.
This may be an especially heartbreaking time for Neil, because he may have still been estranged from Big Ang at the time of her death. During Big Ang’s appearance on The Dr. Oz Show, which aired on Tuesday, she revealed that she ended her relationship with Neil, to whom she was married for six years. She explained that she didn’t feel he was being supportive and doing enough for her. She said that she would rather be alone than be with him.
“I felt like he never stepped up to the plate, so I was done with it. Now, it’s too late, bye, I would rather be by myself…I been taking care of everything since I been married to him. I don’t need it. So, I’d rather be alone. And I’ve, that’s what I did.”
Big Ang pointed out that she has her family, some of whom were in the audience and cried as Big Ang spoke, to support her through her cancer battle.
“We’re a very tight family. If my family wasn’t here to support me through all this, I don’t think I could do it.”
Big Ang also talked about how taken aback she was by her cancer diagnoses.
“One day I was perfectly fine, thinking I had strep throat, the next thing I know I have stage II throat cancer. It’s shocking what happened. First I thought I was cancer-free [after two surgeries to remove the cancer] and I was gonna have a big celebration, have a party, and then a month later I [had] stage IV [lung and brain cancer].”
Dr. Oz paid tribute to Big Ang upon learning of her death.
On the latest episode of Mob Wives, which aired Wednesday night, Big Ang was shown learning that she has lung cancer during a visit to her doctor that Neil missed out on because he said he was working. Afterwards, she was shown arguing with Neil and kicking him out of the house.
Big Ang expresses skepticism that he went to work. She wonders what kind of work he’s doing since he never seems to have a dollar. Upon Neil returning home, she asks him if he went for a drink. He maintains that he went to work. She yells at him for not going with her to the doctor’s appointment, which he knew about. Neil defends himself by saying that she doesn’t communicate with him and that he works from six in the morning to 12 at night. She asks him where’s the money. She then says she won’t keep paying his health insurance, which costs $900 a month. She demands that he move out and yells that she doesn’t want him. He says he won’t leave with $6 in his pocket. She straight out says that he doesn’t want to be married and wants to be alone. He eventually storms out.
In her interview, Big Ang let out her frustration over the bills and Neil not helping out.
“You think I have time to focus on the bills? Be a man, pay a f**king bill. Cause now I have lung cancer. I just went through throat cancer. Now that Neil got a second f**king job, he walks around like he’s the s**t, king of the castle. And I still gotta worry about the f**king bills. Enough is enough…You’re outta here muthaf**ker. Get the f**k out.”
Besides Mob Wives, Neil and Big Ang’s marital problems have also aired on Couples Therapy. Last week, Neil hinted about his unhappiness when he tweeted that the only thing making him smile these days is his grandchild.
Me and my baby only thing making me smile these day want to tell everyone thanks for all the love pic.twitter.com/xEwX5eKOPE
— Neil Murphy (@MrBigAngVH1) February 11, 2016
Instead of live-tweeting their opinions on the latest Mob Wives episode, most of Big Ang’s co-stars stayed silent to focus instead on Big Ang.
Some media sites falsely reported Big Ang’s death Wednesday evening, which prompted her family to release a statement denying the reports and stating that she’s still in the hospital fighting for her life.
Please see below:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE… pic.twitter.com/xxd2p7Ftqb
— Angela Raiola (@biggangVH1) February 18, 2016
Unfortunately for her fans, Angela “Big Ang” Raiola’s death was officially confirmed a few hours later.
— Angela Raiola (@biggangVH1) February 18, 2016
After her death was confirmed, her Mob Wives co-stars Drita D’Avanzo, Renee Graziano, Karen Gravano, Carla Facciolo, Marissa Jade, and Brittany Fogarty shared their heartbreak. Former co-stars Natalie Guercio and Alicia DiMichele also paid their tributes.
Completely heartbroken ???? this has been an emotional roller coaster for you, your family and the people that love you but throughout it all you never let this fucking disease take your spirit …you woke up every day and fought with amazing courage & dignity and looked beautiful doing it… nobody knows the true definition of being tough until they watch someone fight the battle you just did ????I admire your strength and courage!!!! Right up until the very end you laughed joked and made sure everyone around you was OK…You have a heart of gold my friend The amount of people that came together to support you speaks volumes of how much you are truly loved and respected…. You are an amazing soul and I am blessed to have had you in my life…rest in paradise Angel ???? you will forever be loved & missed ???????????? #fuckcancer
Heaven just gained another angel. (For all those who feel I didn't mention Angela last night, I did. But I also did not speak of her situation bc it is Not my business nor place to speak of it until the time was right. You have to know when to respect someone's privacy) You will be missed beautiful @biggangvh1 ????????????????????
Heaven Gained A Beautiful Angel.. I Love U Ang ???????????? pic.twitter.com/A8xXScv8Lz
— NatalieEliseGuercio (@NatalieEGuercio) February 18, 2016
"We're not here for a long time, we are here for a good time" Big Ang used to tell me this all the time, as she would point to her tattoo of the words. She would adamantly tell me this while going through my trying time, this is how she truly lived. She was always happy and positive and wanted to spread her Love to everyone around her to be happy as well. She gave so much of herself to all. She had that special gift to make everybody feel like a somebody. My boys and I adored her, she will be truly missed. Our prayers are with her family, they were all that mattered to her. May God Bless her Beautiful soul✨#bigloveforbigang #familyovereverything @biggangvh1 @roccogarofalo @badassboss
In an interview with E! News, posted on Thursday evening, Karen and Carla, who was with Big Ang during her final moments, confirmed that Neil Murphy was by his wife’s side the entire time. Karen said that Neil was strong for Big Ang.
“Neil was there, he was there with his family. He was like any man would be losing a wife. He was upset, and he was strong, and he was just holding on.
Carla gave her opinion that Neil has always been there for Big Ang.
He’s always been by her side throughout this whole ordeal, since she found out she had cancer. I feel like Neil has always been strong for her and always been there for her.”
It was announced in December 2015 that the current sixth season will be Mob Wives’ last.
[Photos by Robin Marchant/Getty Images]