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Policing runs in the family

Ben Godar

Family ties are not uncommon at the Burbank Police Department, where

Sgt. Rick Madrid was recently promoted to lieutenant.

Al Madrid, a retired Burbank lieutenant, pinned the new badge on


his son during a Tuesday morning ceremony. Al Madrid spent 30 years

on the force before retiring in 1983.

Rick Madrid joined the department in 1975 as a cadet, and entered

the police academy two years later. He said it was always a goal of


his to achieve the same rank as his father.

“If I can be half the lieutenant he was, I’ll do a really good

job,” he said.

Al Madrid said being part of his son’s promotion was a great

thrill, one he appreciates more now that he’s older.

“I’m more thrilled with this than I was with my own promotion,” he


With at least one Madrid having served on the force for the past


50 years, spokesman Sgt. Bruce Speirs said the family has made a

major impact on the department.

“Everybody on the department has worked with a Madrid in some form

or fashion,” he said.

Though the Madrid family is notable for the length of time they’ve

been on the force, they are not the only relatives to wear Burbank

Police uniforms. Another father/son tandem is Sgt. Neil Gunn, whose

son Neil recently joined the department as a cadet.


Siblings also serve side by side. Officers Scott and Jason Meadows

are brothers, while Det. Danny Mayreis serves with his sister,

Officer Theresa Geier.

Speirs said there are also numerous husband-and- wife teams

working for the department.

“Law enforcement and the fire service have long family

traditions,” he said. “But I don’t think they’re different than any

other trade or profession -- it gets in a family’s blood.”