Children and parents had a chance to live out their childhood fantasies behind the wheel of a big city truck Wednesday in Killeen.
More than 600 children toured dozens of vehicles, including garbage trucks, fire trucks, street sweepers and police SWAT team vehicles, at the annual Truck Day in the parking lot of the Killeen Special Events Center.
Children also got a chance to meet the men and women who work in city services.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity,” Killeen mother Annmarie Adams said.
“If something happens, it’s scary. But if they’re aware of the firemen or the policemen they are more apt to follow directions.”
Adams said she was able to teach her 3-year-old daughter, Emily Adams, how important these everyday services that the city provides are to her well-being.
“Without garbage trucks, where would all the garbage go?” Adams said.
Although garbage trucks are important to the city, the fire trucks and the police SWAT vehicle were the most popular attractions.
“Police and fire is always something kids want to be when they’re little,” Killeen police officer Brandon Smith said. “One of the kids was calling himself policeman Mac, and that’s cool.”
A new item for this year’s event was the Killeen Police Department mobile command post, which was used in January during a 15-hour standoff at a home on Tatonka Drive in Killeen.
“Everything the police can do, we can do from this trailer,” said Steven McKenzie, mobile command post operator.
The event was organized by the city and the Friends of the Killeen Public Library, which provided food and beverages for the many drivers who represented several city and state agencies.
“I think the drivers had such a good time with the kids,” said Theresa Strickler, assistant director of city library services.
“They were not afraid to pick up every kid, set them on the seat of their vehicle and let them honk the horns.”