Making the Museum’s Cast Figures
When the National Law Enforcement Museum opens its doors this fall, visitors will see several cast figures of real officers.
Two of those figures will depict SWAT officers – Deputy Darell Edwards of the Los Angeles (CA) County Sheriff’s Department and Sergeant Nate Totorica of the Santa Maria (CA) Police Department. Both were willing to endure the arduous process of being made into a cast figure in order to represent their profession in the National Law Enforcement Museum.
Created by Atta, Inc. in New York City, the process captures each model in painstaking detail. Subjects are covered in Vaseline, to protect the skin, before plaster bandages are applied. Subjects are then positioned in the pose in which their castings will be displayed. Next, a mold of the subject’s body is made with plaster bandages, positioned so that there are seams on each side of the limbs and chest. Once the plaster has set, the bandages are lifted away from the body.
Face, hands, and feet are cast using a medical grade alginate (similar to what dentists use to make impressions) that also allows the artist to capture minute details. Finally, the subject’s head is cast by wrapping his/her hair in plastic and covering the back of the head in plaster bandages. Alginate is applied to the face and neck.
A full-time SWAT officer, Deputy Edwards received his department’s 2016 Medal of Valor for putting his life on the line during a hostage situation where all of the hostages were saved. His figure will be standing in the SWAT section of the Being an Officer exhibit.
Sergeant Totorica received his department’s Life Saving Award in 2010 and the Mark Riddering Award for his work in narcotics for four consecutive years. His figure will be kneeling on top of the Being An Officer exhibit, facing the museum’s SWAT display.
Be sure to look for the likenesses of Deputy Edwards and Sergeant Totorica when you visit the National Law Enforcement Museum this fall.
For more information about the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, please visit nleomf.org. For more information about the National Law Enforcement Museum, please visit nleomf.org/museum.