Jimmy Fallon pays sweet tribute to his mom and gets a little Taylor Swift surprise 

(Screenshot via The Tonight Show/YouTube)
Jimmy Fallon returned to The Tonight Show Monday night after the show went dark last week so he could spend time with his family after his mother, Gloria Fallon, passed on Nov. 4. And the funnyman made sure to dedicate a few moments at the top of the show to his late mother. 
 
“She was the best audience,” Fallon said. “She was the one I was always trying to make laugh. She was such a fan of the show and everything I did," he continued, clearly holding back tears with difficulty.
 
“When we were little, my mom would walk [me and my sister] through the store, and we would hold hands. And she would squeeze my hand three times and say, ‘I love you.’ And I would squeeze back, ‘I love you, too.’
 
“Last week I was in the hospital at her side and I grabbed her hand and I squeezed ‘I love you’ and I just knew we were in trouble.” He finished by expressing how grateful he is to be able to host the show every night and he thanked everyone for their support. 
 

At the end of the show, Taylor Swift performed New Year’s Day off her new reputation album, which producer Mike DiCenos revealed had particular meaning in that moment.
 
Taylor wasn’t even supposed to perform on the show last night but since she was still in town post-SNL, the Tonight Show staff asked on a whim if she would perform. She agreed without hesitation and no one on the staff heard the song before she did it live that night.  
 

New Year’s Day is already an emotional song about holding onto memories, but it also has a line that goes, “You squeeze my hand three times in the back of the taxi / I can tell it’s going to be a long road”—a complete coincidence since Fallon has never shared that “I love you” story publically before.

In that moment, DiCenzo says that the whole crew and audience were in tears. Afterward, Swift gave Fallon an emotional hug. See the full performance below. And good luck not sobbing. 

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