Pass the tissues, please! Taylor Swift's mom, Andrea, made a special appearance at the 2015 Academy of Country Music Awards on Sunday, April 19, just a little over a week after the "Style" singer revealed the heartbreaking news that Andrea had been diagnosed with cancer.
Taking the stage in front of a packed crowd at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, Andrea was eloquent and emotional as she introduced her 25-year-old daughter, one of seven recipients of the 50th Anniversary Milestone Award.
"I've watched this milestone artist from the time she was a tangled-haired little girl growing up on our farm, full of imagination and creativity, until right now, as she prepares for her next world tour," Andrea, 57, began. "And ever since then, her favorite thing in the world to do has been to write a song, tell a story, play guitar or piano. And I've seen those things carry her through every emotion, every experience in her life, good or bad."
Andrea went on to tell the story behind one of Swift's most famous hits, 2008's "Love Story," which is one of the best-selling singles of all time.
"Now every once in a while, her dad, her brother, or I find ourselves to be the subjects of those songs," she shared. "Sometimes we're merely the inspiration — like the time she was 17 years old, and her dad and I strongly disapproved of a certain young man, and rightfully so. But she was mad, she was real mad. And she went to her room, and she closed the door, and she came out about an hour later with a song called 'Love Story.'"
Swift has come a long way since then — and no one is prouder of the woman she's become than her mother. "For many years, I was her constant companion," Andrea said. "And I witnessed a young girl with very few friends become a young woman with many, learning to stand up for herself and the things she believes in, being brave enough to explore her musical curiosity, having a voice against those who hate, and giving of herself to those in need."
Tearing up, she continued, "Like many of you with children of your own, I am a very proud mom. So I'd like to thank the ACMs for honoring her in this way, but I'd also like to thank the entire music community for taking such good care of her. And to the fans, I know you love her as I love her, and for that I thank you eternally."
As previously reported, Swift took to Tumblr on April 9 to tell her fans about her mother's cancer diagnosis, writing, "For Christmas this year, I asked my mom that one of her gifts to me be her going to the doctor to get screened for any health issues, just to ease some worries of mine. She agreed and went in to get checked...The results came in, and I'm saddened to tell you that my mom has been diagnosed with cancer."
She went on to say that while they were keeping the details of her condition private, Andrea wanted Swift's fans to know in the hopes that they might convince their own parents to go to the doctor. "She's got an important battle to fight," the "Blank Space" hitmaker added.
"Thank you for caring about my family so much that she would want me to share this information with you," she wrote. "I hope and pray that you never get news like this."