Long after Brady Jones finishes high school and possibly leaves the city, something he had a big hand in building will remain and continue to be a benefit for his local police department.
Jones, a sophomore at Lewisville High School, was working toward earning the rank of Eagle Scout as part of Boy Scouts Troop 451 when he began reaching out to family and friends for project ideas. Andrea Fisher, who is a friend of his mother’s and a member of the Lewisville Police Department (LPD) SWAT team, told Jones that the department would like a breaching structure for the SWAT team to use for training, similar to what the Irving Police Department (IPD) has.
Last summer Jones began bringing his project idea to life. The breaching structure will be used with the Armored Personnel Carrier (APC) to allow team members to practice breaking down doors and windows and other entry tactics.
“I wanted to do something big that would stay around for a long time, and I wanted to do something different,” Jones said.
Getting to work
After sorting out the details and getting approval from the LPD and the Boy Scouts, Jones partnered with the department’s master welders Lts. Kendall Lynn and Casey Carter. He then set out to raise the money to build the structure.
“I got a lot of donations from family, and I had a car wash that raised more than $1,000,” Jones said. “We even washed Lewisville fire engine.”
Out of the $3,500 Jones raised, $2,500 has been spent so far. He said the remainder will be donated to the LPD.
Working off photos of IPD’s structure, Jones bought a shipping container online and helped pick out the metal to be used. On Feb. 26, Carter and Lynn began cutting holes in the container, welding the doors and helped put everything together.
“They spent two days with him working on the project. They were really, really good to him,” said Shannon Anderson, Jones’ mother.
Now all that’s left before the structure can be used is to paint it. Jones said SWAT team members will select the color for it then, hopefully sometime in April, he and other volunteers will paint it. The structure will be housed at the department’s training field.
“This is a tremendous asset and training tool that will repeatedly aid in our training and using our new APC for safely breaching structures,” said Lewisville police officer and SWAT team member Butch Steinle. “We can safely pull windows from structures while behind armored cover, and this donation physically allows us to train for that.”
Earning a new rank
Once the project is complete, Jones will have to complete a thorough report about everything that went into it. He will go through an executive and board review, among other steps before hopefully getting the final approval from the Boy Scouts.
“My goal is to have everything finished and have my Court of Honor by this summer,” Jones said.
About 98 other Boy Scouts from his troop have earned the rank of Eagle Scout. Jones said he is proud that his project is the biggest the troop has ever seen.
“I learned a lot from this experience, including a lot of leadership skills,” Jones said. “Some of my favorite moments were seeing how the welding was done and leading everyone in completing the structure.”
Jones said he has been invited to come back to the training field to watch the SWAT team use the breaching structure.
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