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(WBIR, Knoxville) - Dollywood kicked off its FireChaser Express Heroes Tour at the Knoxville Fire Department's downtown headquarters Wednesday morning.

The tour aims to honor area firefighters for their bravery.

It includes a 1941 vintage fire truck that will be making its way across East Tennessee with a ceremonial fire hose.

Firefighters are invited to sign the hose which will then be put on display at the family roller coaster set to open next Spring.

The tour kicked off in Knoxville this morning where dozens of firefighters took their turn signing the hose.

"I hope they see more than just an excited ride. I hope they see the dedication and the commitment that is put into the fire service throughout the state of Tennessee," said Assistant Chief Chris Dyer.

Once the vintage truck finishes its tour, it will also become a part of the ride as well.

"It does more than create a ride experience. It's about creating an overall environment and to have a story to tell. And certainly the firefighters of east Tennessee and all firefighters have a story to tell," said Pete Owens, Director of Public Relations at Dollywood.

FireChaser Express is based around volunteer fire departments from the 1940s who helped protect the Great Smokey Mountains.

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