TAMIU Police Department Hosts Fire Engine Pull for Special Olympics Saturday

Call them Titans. Or just call them Tuggers.

No matter what you call them, teams of tuggers will join forces with Texas A&M International University's Police Department to present a Law Enforcement Torch Run and Fire Department Fire Engine Pull to benefit Special Olympics Texas on Saturday, April 6 at TAMIU's Physical Plant parking lot on the east side of the campus. Admission is free of charge and open to the public.

Sergeant Jaime Rios of the TAMIU Police Department said the department routinely assists Special Olympics, but is especially excited about this event, which is being offered for the first time.

"We usually participate with the sale of T-shirts, steak plates, Jail and Bail or other events, but this is the first time this event is offered and we were eager to help host this fundraiser. We're encouraging fellow law enforcement members and others to join us," he explained.

Officer Rebecca Soto of the TAMIU Police Department is helping to coordinate the event, which will involve local law enforcement agencies, businesses, associations, groups and others.

Registration will begin at 9 a.m. for teams of 10 individuals. Fee for entry is $25 per person or $250 per 10-member team. All participants must be at least 18 years old and complete a waiver on site prior to the event. Men will compete in a fire engine pull. Women will compete in an ambulance pull.

Teams will compete by pulling a fire engine or ambulance 20 feet. Categories will include fastest pull and lowest combined weight. Fastest pull contestants will compete for the fastest time that elapses in completing the pull. Combined weight contestants will have five minutes to pull the engine or ambulance 20 feet utilizing team members with the lowest combined weight.

Team trophies will be awarded and all participants will receive a 2002 Fire Engine Pull T-shirt.

All proceeds benefit Special Olympics Texas programs.

Special Olympics is a year-round program of sports training and athletic competition for children and adults with mental retardation. By increasing fitness and skill levels, Special Olympics Athletes are building self-esteem and gaining social skills, which provide lifelong benefits.

A number of programs, including the Torch Run scheduled in May, will take place in the months to come to help support Special Olympics Texas programs.

For more information on participation in the Special Olympics Fire Engine Pull, please contact Officer Soto at 326.2100 or email rsoto@tamiu.edu

Additional information is also available by fax from Special Olympics representative Maribel Santoya at 712.2408, or by visiting offices at 1407 Calle del Norte, Suite 12.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Affairs and Information Services at pais@tamiu.edu