louistomlinsonmumgraziaImage: Getty Images

One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson tragically lost his mother Johannah Deakin on Wednesday, after she died of leukemia at just 42-years-old.

In honour of his mum and to fulfil her dying wish, Louis opted to perform as scheduled on the UK’s X Factor on Saturday night, singing his hit Just Hold On.

The 24-year-old gave an energetic performance, but struggled to keep his composure when his long-time mentor Simon Cowell spoke to him afterwards.

“Louis, I have to say I’ve known you for six years. The bravery of what you’ve done. I respect you as an artist, as a person and your mum was so proud of you and she was so excited for the performance. She’s looking down on you tonight.”

The news broke on Saturday that Johannah has lost her life after being diagnosed with leukemia in January. A statement from the family said the mother of six had “a very aggressive form of leukaemia that required immediate and continuous treatment”.

Three weeks ago Louis posted a photo with his mum to Instagram, although no one knew that privately Johannah was battling such a serious diagnosis.


Image: Louis Tomlinson via Instagram

Tomlinson, who became a father himself this year when his son Freddie was born in January, took to Twitter to thank fans for their support following the news.

“All the support has been incredible!” he wrote. “Let’s do this together tonight,” referring to his X Factor performance.

Johannah leaves behind Louis and five other children, including a set of twins just two years old.