Almost three dozen new mothers and mothers-to-be gathered at the Killeen Civic and Conference Center on Wednesday for a special baby shower.

The event was sponsored by Operation Shower and H-E-B stores in the Fort Hood area, especially for those whose spouses or partners were deployed.

“It’s a typical baby shower,” said Tamra Jones, of H-E-B. There were games, raffles and giveaways, along with food and music.

Operation Shower is a national nonprofit organization started in 2007 when founder LeAnn Morrissey decided she wanted to do something to give back to military families.

“I know what to give at baby showers,” Morrissey said of her inspiration after exploring various options.

She also realized giving a baby shower for those whose spouse or partner was deployed would improve morale among those military members.

“When you’re deployed, it helps to know somebody’s looking out for the expectant mother,” Morrissey said.

Alexa Archuleta was eyeing items on a table while holding 2-month-old Elliott.

“I’d really like that bouncer,” she said of the prize.

Elliott was actually having a chance to get to know his dad, who just returned from a deployment in South Korea.

“This is a great way of getting to meet other Army wives and find out what the military has to offer families.”

While the moms had their arms full with their little ones, they needed carts to take the bounty from the baby shower to their cars.

Each mom received a “shower in a box” as Morrissey described the large boxes filled with a diaper bag, toys, books and other necessities. “It’s our signature gift. It’s everything a mother would register for.”

Other gifts included a baby carrier and diapers.

Briana Corey, while holding 2-week-old William, said the event was great.

“Not everyone gets to have a baby shower,” she said.

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