ERIC Bolton was at Accrington Stanley's last home game in the Football League - and he will be there for their first game back as the Reds make history tomorrow.
After a 44-year-absence from the Football League, Stanley will run out at Chester tomorrow with the eyes of the nation on them as their fairytale comes true.
Forced to resign because of bankruptcy in 1962, Eric, a Stanley fan since he was eight and now 85, would never have imagined this day would have come when he would see his beloved Accrington back where they belong.
And he admits it will be an emotional day at Chester tomorrow.
"I went to every game I could since I was eight years old. I have seen cup games against Manchester City in 1936, I missed work because of the FA Cup replay against Blackburn which was during the day in 1937 and I watched them through the war years when we were top of the league and had guest players from Manchester United.
"Then I saw the good side under Walter Galbraith and I remember players like George Mee, who was only five foot two and had legs like tree trunks but he could cross a ball on a pin head.
"Then there was Georgie Stewart - a great striker.
"I was at work in Howard and Bullough engineering works when one of the Stanley directors, Reg Allen, came into work and looked really gloomy.
"He said they had had a whip round to try and save the club and raised about £20 which was a lot of money in those days but it wasn't enough.
"He was really down and said the club was packing up. I don't think anyone could believe it. You do tend to accept it at the time but it was so disappointing.
"I didn't know what to do with myself as I told my wife, before we got married, that I went to football in the winter, cricket in the summer and I even played darts in between. She accepted it but it was a sad day when the football went."
Eric started watching Stanley when they re-formed in 1968 in the Lancashire Combination and his support has never faded.
He went to Woking when Stanley celebrated their return to the Football League and admitted it was "one of the best days of my life".
And Eric, who has been a season ticket holder for the last five seasons, will be at Chester tomorrow.
" I can't wait for Chester. I would have been watching the score come through on teletext but when my son's friends offered me a lift I said certainly! I will be going there and going to Stockport. I have made sure I can go to both of them.
"It will be grand when I see them run out - as long as we don't get beat. I will give them a shout!
"But I don't think we will do too badly in the league. If they finish half way I will be happy with that.
"I watched their games in the last season in the league - the only ground I had never been to was Hartlepool but I don't know whether I will be able to get there this season. I hope so though."