MANILA - Juan Karlos Labajo, the youngest among the celebrity housemates of the newest season of "Pinoy Big Brother," was unable to hide his emotions as he recalled being with his mother on the day she passed away.
Labajo, 15, burst into tears when he expressed regret over not being able to spend more time with his mother, Maylinda, who died due to complications with her pancreatic cancer back in 2013, not long before he auditioned for "The Voice Kids."
"Isang malaking pagsisisi iyong kasi parang kaunting oras na lang yung natira para gawin yung mga bagay na ginagawa ng mag-ina," the young singer admitted.
Labajo was raised by his grandparents after his German father, Oliver Stolz, died and his mother left to start another family. He, however, refused to paint his mother as a "pabayang ina" because she paid for his education.
Labajo reunited with his mother after she was diagnosed with stage four cancer. "Hindi ko ho nagawa lahat noong mga bagay na gusto kong gawin. Pinipilit ko po ang sarili ko na hindi siya maalala kasi bumabalik po lahat ng sakit," he said.
"Nandoon po ako hanggang sa huling hininga niya. Nandoon po ako."
Moments after his confession, Labajo's fans on Twitter began a hashtag to express their support for him, which quickly became one of the most talked about topics on the social media service. "Crying doesn't mean you're weak. It just means you've been strong for so long," insisted a fan.
Labajo's emotional outburst stemmed from the episode's task of having the housemates orchestrate a puppet show. After suggesting a few improvements to their initial plan, he told "Kuya" that he felt his opinion wasn't being taken seriously.
The confusion was later ironed out, leading to the housemates successfully completing the task. However, Labajo's rare show of emotion prompted "Kuya" to ask him about his past.