Winston and Christian Edmondson have always shared a last name and a blood line.
But these days they’re sharing police stories and even some law enforcement advice, too.
Winston, a longtime Lewisville resident and former mayoral candidate, was recently hired by the Lake Dallas Police Department as an officer. Christian, his son, is expected to complete his cadet status in the coming days and become an officer for the Flower Mound Police Department.
For both men it’s a career path that wasn’t always in the plans, but now they wouldn’t have it any other way.
Winston said his decision to pursue a career in law enforcement stems from his previous attempts in politics. He ran for Lewisville mayor in 2009, 2012, 2015 and 2018.
“I was always interested in public service, and I felt like getting in politics was the best avenue,” Winston said. “In 2018 I spent a lot of time with Lewisville officers, and I asked them what they need to do their jobs. They wanted more officers on the street. So I pushed for that in the election, and that got me closer to the job of law enforcement. I gained a new level of respect for them.”
The mayoral runs were unsuccessful, but in the process Winston realized joining a police department would allow him to serve the community even more.
Not only did he consider becoming a police officer but he also encouraged his sons to pursue that as well. Christian, who was a junior and basketball standout at Pittsburg State in Kansas at the time, was next up.
“My dad recommended that I pursue a career in law enforcement,” Christian said. “He said, ‘it would be good for you.’”
At the time Christian was working toward a degree in business. But his father’s suggestion intrigued him, so Christian reached out to Sgt. Jason Rachal and Officer Justin LoBello, who were both school resource officers at Flower Mound High School when Christian was a student.
“We toured the police department, and they talked about the work, the community and the job,” Christian said. “And I was sold.”
Christian was hired by FMPD in June of 2020 and began Tarrant County College’s Law Enforcement Academy a month later.
Seeing how seriously Christian, 23, was taking it, Winston, 43, decided to apply as well and even talked his way into being in the same academy class as Christian.
That’s when the true support between the father and son reached a new level.
“There was a lot of physical conditioning required, and as a 40-something-year-old, it’s not easy,” Winston said. “But Christian helped me through it.”
In turn, Winston helped Christian with the academic part.
“I helped him make sure he had all the information he needed for the test,” Winston said. “We learned from each other.”
Christian said the 5 a.m. drive to the academy in Fort Worth together was key in the preparation.
“We’d have conversations on what we’re going through and how to handle different scenarios,” Christian said. “We’d quiz each other. Sometimes it was more of a friends relationship than a father-and-son relationship. There’s a lot of law and responsibility that comes with being a police officer.”
Then there’s the physical training – workouts, sprints, tactical maneuvers – they had to endure, and the friendly competition that went along with it.
“I wasn’t going to let him outdo me on the physical part,” Christian said, laughing. “But that just made each other better.”
The hard work paid off as both graduated from the academy, and in doing so they made history as the first father and son to graduate from the Tarrant County College academy.
The two then went in slightly different directions. Christian began working for FMPD while Winston joined the much smaller Lake Dallas PD in January. Winston said he likes the opportunities he is afforded in a smaller agency.
“In the larger departments you have more resources, but in the smaller departments you experience more because you don’t have specialized departments,” Winston said. “I thought Lake Dallas was a better fit for me. But we’re both police officers in two different worlds.”
Still, Winston and Christian will share their experiences from their respective departments. And son is even able to offer dad some advice, including one that helped save a life.
Winston once asked Christian what he suggests using an empty pocket for on his uniform, and Christian suggested a box of Narcan, which is used to help revive someone who has overdosed on drugs.
That advice paid off during the February winter storm when Winston and another officer responded to an unconscious person along the side of the road.
Winston grabbed the Narcan, which normally would have been left in the vehicle, from his pocket to help revive the man.
“Christian’s advice helped save a man’s life,” Winston said.
Winston and Christian know there will be other positive outcomes like that in the future, but there will also be challenging calls. They’re just happy to both be doing something that makes a difference in people’s lives.
“Campaign season was meaningful, but it was once every three years,” Winston said. “But now, every night for 12 hours I can make a difference. I’m glad I found my true calling.”