HUTTO, Texas (KXAN) — Driving into Hutto, it is hard to miss the blue balloons lining US 79. Flags are at half-staff throughout town and a memorial outside Hutto City Hall keeps growing by the hour.
It is a town where everyone knows each other and for Kelsey Heckel, Sgt. Chris Kelley was a face she saw often.
“You know everybody…recognize their faces at least,” she said.
A waitress at The Texan Cafe, Heckel served Kelley lunch just one day before he was killed.
“He sat over here at one of our booths Tuesday morning for lunch,” she added. “In and out like they normally always are…he was very sweet.”
Employees at the cafe said it is a popular spot for officers to come eat. But Thursday, no uniforms were found.
“I couldn’t stop thinking about it (Wednesday),” said Heckel. “I spent all day thinking, ‘how do you leave a house in the morning and don’t come back.'”
Even those who did not know the officer personally said he had an impact on them.
“They have a heck of a job to do. A lot of times their hands are tied…they do an outstanding job,” said Dennis Miller.
“We’ll come together to try and help his family and the police department and stuff,” Heckel added, “and that’s the type of community we are and that we strive to be.”
The owner of The Texan Cafe says 25 percent of all proceeds Saturday will go to Kelley’s family and the Hutto Police Department.