9/11 Memorial Fire Truck In Fort Smith Preserves Powerful Day In History

FORT SMITH (KFSM) -- September 11th, 2018 marks 17 years since the 9/11 terrorist attacks in New York City.

Varying tributes have poured in from across the country, including one unique memorial set up along Rogers Avenue in Fort Smith.

The memorial is an older-generation fire truck built in 1969 in New York that now belongs to the local non-profit group 9/11 Memorial Fire Truck.

It carries the identity ‘Engine 343’, which is named after the 343 firefighters who died in the attack.

“The whole purpose of this truck is to keep the memory of the fallen alive so that we truly never forget,” said Jason Mattingly the Founder of 9/11 Memorial Fire Truck.

He says his truck memorial is geared toward educating younger generations about that point in history that changed our country forever.

"Everything has changed because of 9/11 and children need to know that, they need to remember."

The memorial has emotional and iconic photographs plastered along the side of the truck, depicting. It also is equipped with a television screen and speakers that recount what took place on that day.

Mattingly says the devastation doesn't just live in the past, he said people are still dying today because of the fallout from the terrorist attacks in 2001.

"We continue to lose people now because of cancer and the asbestos and everything. So, it's still an ongoing battle."

In the future, Mattingly says he wants to revamp the truck by improving the paint job.