Seniors could not stop grinning and teenagers had their iPhones at the ready as former prime minister John Howard approached at Midland Gate Shopping Centre yesterday.
The 74-year-old was back on the campaign trail, spruiking for the Liberal Party in the marginal seats of Hasluck and Brand.
Hasluck MP Ken Wyatt and the party's candidate for Brand, Donna Gordin, flanked the former PM as he greeted shoppers with a casual "hello" or a firm handshake.
There were no signs of the unpopularity that led to Mr Howard becoming only the second sitting prime minister to lose his seat, in the 2007 election.
For some shoppers, the events that led to Mr Howard's exit from politics had been forgotten."I just love him," Sally Lewis, of Bassendean, said. "He made Australia what it is today."