Taylor Swift delivered a rare and emotional performance of “Ronan” Monday night for her Arizona audience. The song, which is inspired by a mother’s love for her son who died of cancer, brought the audience to tears.
“There’s a woman here tonight named Maya Thompson,” Swift announced before playing the song. “I wouldn’t know half as much as I know about childhood cancer and childhood cancer research if she hadn’t shared her story about her son Ronan.”
Ronan, the youngest of Thompson’s three sons, was diagnosed with Stage 4 neuroblastoma on Aug. 12, 2010, and died May 9, 2011 — three days before his 4th birthday, according to the Ronan Thompson Foundation.
“In my opinion, one of the bravest things that a human being can ever do is to go through something absolutely unbearable and then share their experience with the world,” Swift said of Thompson.
In April, Swift shared on her Tumblr page that her mother, Andrea Findlay, had been diagnosed with cancer.
“I’ve had cancer hit really close to me in my family, so because Maya’s right there, I would like you to give her a round of applause, please,” Swift said.
After the concert, Thompson uploaded a clip of Swift’s tribute with the caption: “I still can’t believe you did this. This will forever be one of the most special moments of my life. Thank you @taylorswift for your beautiful heart and for never forgetting my Ro. I love you to the moon and back.”
Watch the emotional tribute below, and please SHARE it with your friends.