Carole's husband, Anthony, lost his battle with cancer just three weeks after the fatal plane crash. Carole recalls their struggles because of the illness: "We were all sort of in denial. It was the way Anthony and I decided to conduct the whole illness. He would have the cancer and I would take care of it, and we wouldn't really talk about it. And we compartmentalized it."
Carole says that toward the end of her husband's fight with cancer, John Kennedy Jr. insisted they try to help Anthony get through the five stages of grief. Despite John's concern, Carole says she felt Anthony's denial would outlast the disease. "With Anthony I think it did. And that's the way he wanted it. And I had to respect that. And it was very difficult, you know, it was very difficult not to talk about it, but I knew that he didn't want to talk about it."