Club icon and former Port Vale striker Tom Pope said ‘it was an honour’ to carry out Frankie Allen at Monday’s game.
The forward returned to Vale Park for the first time since his summer departure and was asked to accompany the five-year-old onto the pitch prior to kick off.
Frankie has been suffering with leukemia for the past two years but her treatment finally ended today.
The Bury game wasn’t the first time Pope met Frankie, though. He led her out when she was mascot against Bristol City in October 2013 and has visited the family frequently ever since.
Speaking to port-vale.co.uk, the 30-year-old was thrilled to be able to do it again.
“It’s brilliant. I’ve known Frankie a while over the last couple of years,” he said.
“You just do whatever you can to make her happy and if she wanted me to carry her out it’s great for me for her to still do it.
“I think she has that trust in me as well. She is quite a shy girl and it took her a while to get used to me I suppose.
“Once she gets to know you she’s a lot more comfortable with it and it was an honour for me to take her out.”
Following the conclusion of her treatment Frankie could be given the all clear in the next couple of weeks.
“It would just top it all off,” Pope added. “It’s been a terrible couple of years for the whole family really.
“They’ve spent a lot of time up the hospital toing and froing and then with work and things they’ve had to have a lot of time off to make sure she’s getting better.
“To get the all clear after the last couple of years, I’m sure they’d be absolutely amazed and she’s a little fighter and a little warrior.”
Frankie’s mother, Karen, was very grateful to the Club and to Tom for what they have done for her daughter.
“When she was mascot it was great. She loves him [Pope],” she said.
“She still thinks he’s at Vale even though he is playing for Bury. When we saw the fixtures we couldn’t believe it, two days before she finished treatment.”