On Monday, influencer and fitness expert Cheyann Shaw’s four-year battle with ovarian cancer came to a tragic end. She was just 28. Her family shared the news on her Instagram, writing:
“With heavy hearts, we are sad to announce that our beautiful girl Cheyann has been called home to heaven.”
Including the smiling photo of The Butterfly Nectar blogger (above), they added:
“If there’s one thing Cheyann taught us is that no matter what battles we face, we can always find a reason to smile through them.”
Her grieving mother, Darci Clark, was also quoted:
“My heart is breaking today, our baby girl lost her long battle with ovarian cancer. She fought until the bitter end. She is a true warrior and survivor. She will be truly missed and will forever be in my heart.”
Truly so, so sad. Before Cheyann was diagnosed with cancer, she gained fame as a bikini competitor and body builder. In fact, at age 23, she admitted her diagnosis had been an accident that “saved my life.” Wow!
Over the last few years, she pivoted her upload strategy to include more of her personal journey, hoping to document what life with the disease was really like and, as she told The Washington Post, “what cancer does to a body.” From hospital visits to recipes, she shared her life with her fans, whom she affectionately called “beautiful butterflies.”
In 2016, while in the throes of cancer treatment, the Instagrammer told People:
“When I was first diagnosed, I was scared, but it went away quickly. I knew that I had no choice but to fight. I wasn’t going to let cancer win. I also knew that my husband and family need me and there is no way I am leaving them. So that is when I put my boxing gloves on and got in the ring to knock cancer out.”
And boy did she fight! According to WaPo, during her battle, the young woman had her reproductive organs, spleen, appendix, some of her colon, and a large tumor in her abdomen removed. Not to mention the many rounds of chemo she endured.
On December 23, the influencer shared an update in the hospital with her thumbs up (above), explaining:
“I’ve been in and out of the hospital with a liver issue that has been fixed and now I’m on a feeding tube which is totally okay. Your girl needed some help with food lol.”
Sadly, things weren’t as “resolved” as she had hoped as she passed days later. Her husband Kaleb Shaw expressed an emotional tribute to his lady, captioning a sweet pic:
“My heart is broken. I can’t imagine my life without her. I know she is in a better place away from the pain and suffering that comes with dealing with cancer. She is my hero, best friend and inspired not only myself, but thousands of people around the world.””
Our thoughts go out to Shaw’s family and friends in this difficult time. Cheyann will be truly missed.