LEW Officer never thought he'd see the day Melbourne lifted an AFL premiership cup.
He'd been following the Demons since childhood - Officer recalls idolising Ron Barassi in the red and blue - but after 57 years was starting to lose hope.
Naturally, Officer couldn't pass up the chance to see the historic cup in the flesh at Gateway Plaza on Monday.
"As a long-term supporter I didn't think this day would ever come," he told The Standard.
"To get there, grab a hold of the cup and feel it, you know it's real. I'm not one to overshoot it, I was keeping a lid on it for a long time.
To get there, grab a hold of the cup and feel it, you know it's real.Lew Officer
"Towards the end of the season, in the last couple of games, the lid blew right off and they were playing fantastic footy."
Officer said he was relishing a return to the footy in 2022 after COVID-19 restrictions prevented spectators from attending several fixtures in 2021.
"We normally get down there for half a dozen games or so," he said.
"We're looking forward to it. COVID permitting, we'd absolutely love to get back there."
Melbourne defeated the Western Bulldogs in a 74-point thrashing in Perth on September 25 to lift the cup.
Demons star Christian Petracca was awarded the Norm Smith Medal for best on ground.
Warrnambool-based Demons fans Bevin Maar said the chance to touch the cup with son Ollie, 5, was special.
He said it was enjoyable to bond over the footy with his children.
"It's pretty memorable, especially with the cup coming all the way to Warrnambool," Maar said.
"It's a lot better than having to go to Melbourne to see it. It's good for the kids as well."