Mama June Shannon Reveals What Daughter Anna 'Kept Repeating' in Her Final Months (Exclusive)

Anna "Chickadee" Cardwell died from stage 4 cancer in December 2023 at age 28

<p>Mega</p> (L-R) Anna


(L-R) Anna 'Chickadee' Cardwell and Mama June Shannon.

Mama June Shannon knew when it was the beginning of the end for daughter Anna "Chickadee" Cardwell after her stage 4 cancer diagnosis.

"We knew after we came back from our last vacation on December the 4th as we went to Gatlinburg. That's where she wanted to go. We went there the last week of November instead of July 4th. Well, the 5th," the Mama June: Family Crisis star, 44, tells PEOPLE exclusively. "I kind of knew something was up when we was in and out the last couple of days, but we adored our time."

June continues, "Once she came back here and she [had] seen the nurses and all of that, they was just telling us that she was starting to transition, which I just thought it was because she was out from the trip and stuff like that. But no, it really was she was just transitioning."

Related: Anna Cardwell Prepares to Get Her 'Affairs in Order' amid Cancer Journey as Her Family Worries About Their New Reality

<p>Anna Cardwell TikTok</p> Anna 'Chickadee' Cardwell

Anna Cardwell TikTok

Anna 'Chickadee' Cardwell

PEOPLE confirmed last March that Anna had been diagnosed with stage 4 cancer in January. She died at age 28 the following December.

Though Anna's diagnosis and eventual death proved to be hard on the family, June says the experience allowed the famous brunch to draw closer together.

"We did get closer during that. Because that's really what Anna kept repeating, 'I want to spend more time with family. I want to spend more time together,'" she shares. "We came together and made that happen."

Related: Anna Cardwell's Husband Is Finally Emotionally Ready to Go Through Her Things 2 Months After Her Death (Exclusive)

<p>Mama June/Instagram</p> Mama June Shannon and family are pictured.

Mama June/Instagram

Mama June Shannon and family are pictured.

Fortunately for June's family, the matriarch says her husband Justin Stroud has been "a very big support."

"I tell a lot of people he didn't have to do what he [has] done. But me and him, we took Anna to every treatment. He was mainly the one helping get the kids back and forward to school, stuff like that," she adds. "He was a great support. My kids call him."

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Mama June: Family Crisis airs Fridays at 9 p.m. ET on WE tv.

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