It’s no surprise that “mama bear” Mob Wives star Angela “Big Ang” Raiola brought more than 200 people together to mourn her death – and celebrate her fun-loving life – at her funeral Monday. Read more inside…
Fans, friends, family and costars flocked to the Basilica of Regina Pacis in her hometown of Brooklyn, New York, on Monday to pay their respects to Raiola, who died early Thursday morning after battling stage 4 cancer in her lung and brain. She was 55.
The niece of a late N.Y.C. crime captain is survived by two children, six grandchildren and her estranged husband Neil Murphy, who attended the service.
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In her final interview, Raiola insisted she “would rather be alone” because Murphy “never stepped up to the plate.” But after six years of marriage, the Staten Island sanitation worker was by the former bar owner’s hospital bedside in her final hours.
Last week, Big Ang‘s friend told PEOPLE “He’s part of her life.” “He’s still her husband, you know? I don’t know if they got back together, but to Ang, when she throws somebody off her for a little bit, they’re always back in. She takes in people.”
After Raiola passed, Murphy, 43, tweeted, “I will always love you forever please watch over the grandkids I know you will.”
Renee Graziano, who appeared on Mob Wives for all six seasons, was photographed looking somber while leaving the church.
Karen Gravano added: “I’m sure she’s looking over all of us wanting us to celebrate her life, and right now she probably in heaven drinking shots of Patron. She will be missed terribly.”
The final season of Mob Wives – which chronicles Raiola‘s health crisis – airs Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET on VH1.