Honoring a Fallen Officer

Masonry Installation and Care Products Become Part of a Permanent Memorial

Honoring a Fallen Officer

>>> Case Study
Mortars, Mixtures and Staining

Masonry Installation and Care Products Become Part of a Permanent Memorial

By Art Mintie, CSI, CDT

Masonry Installation and Care Products Become Part of a Permanent Memorial

Deputy Sheriff Jonathan Scott Pine, a two-year veteran of the Orange County (Fla.) sheriff’s office, was responding to a call of multiple car break-ins on Feb. 10, 2014, when he was shot and killed by the suspected burglar. Area residents were shocked and saddened by the event, and wanted to find a way to appropriately honor the sacrifice and memory of the Deputy Sheriff. A committee of the Homeowner’s Association (HOA) in the neighborhood where the shooting took place evaluated several recommendations, and they agreed that the best tribute would be a permanent ground memorial replicating the fallen officer’s badge in a prominent location in the community.

Masonry Installation and Care Products Become Part of a Permanent MemorialThe HOA president contacted Trinity Surfaces of Orlando, a local tile supplier, to see if a project like this was possible. The tile supplier offered to donate the needed tiles and reached out to Jim Doane, a custom masonry contractor in Sanford, Fla., for installation. At the same time, Trinity Surfaces reached out to LATICRETE International. LATICRETE offered to donate the necessary installation materials for the memorial, and the project quickly got under way.

The process began with a scan of the badge to enlarge it to the size needed for the memorial. The next step was to choose the best tile colors and pre-cut everything to fit the 17-foot-diameter design. Formal site preparation began in order to coincide with the one-year anniversary of the tragic shooting.

“It’s impossible to take on a project like this one and not get personally involved,” says Doane, owner of Jimbo’s Creative Masonry. “Despite the short timeline and environmental challenges, there was no way any of us was going to let the community down.”

During the construction process, Doane faced a number of significant challenges. First was the very tight timeline: there were only 15 days from the time the project was approved to the night of the dedication ceremony.

The second challenge was the surrounding landscape in the installation location. The memorial was designed to fit in the center of an existing circular section of sidewalk, but that sidewalk was 13 inches (330 mm) higher on one side than the other, so he had to account for that difference as well as drainage needs.

The third challenge was the design of the walkway itself. The original design called for individual stepping stones to approach each side of the badge, but those stones would have been subject to movement. Therefore, to prevent any movement, Doane poured concrete footers upon which to set pre-cut tile.

The fourth and final challenge was the late arrival of the central medallion. The 36-inch bronze medallion would not arrive until the day before the dedication, so all tile placed ahead of time had to be measured and placed with the utmost accuracy to allow the medallion to be inserted at the final step.

A number of installation products from LATICRETE were used in the project.

Masonry Installation and Care Products Become Part of a Permanent Memorial

To prepare for the tile installation on the memorial, Doane used STRATA_MAT™, a high-performance uncoupling membrane for use under ceramic tile and stone installations, for both residential and commercial applications. Designed to replace traditional underlayment materials, the patent-pending design of STRATA_MAT provides for an enhanced mechanical bond of the adhesive mortar and for faster drying of the mortar, allowing for shorter time to grout.

To install the selected tiles, Doane used 254™ Platinum, a one-step, polymer-fortified, thin-set mortar for interior and exterior installation of ceramic tile, stone, quarry tile, pavers and brick. 254 Platinum, designed to mix just with water, has a long open time with excellent adhesion and workability.

Once the tiles were in place, Doane used PERMACOLOR® Grout, a high-performance, fast-setting grout that provides a dense and hard grout joint, for all seams. It is color consistent, mixes with water only, and inhibits mold and mildew with anti-microbial technology.

Doane used LATASIL™, a high-performance, one-component, neutral-cure, 100% silicone sealant designed for ceramic tile and stone applications in wet areas. It is easy to smooth and tool, is equipped with fungicides to resist mold and mildew growth, and has exceptional movement capacity.

As a final step, STONETECH® BulletProof® Sealer was applied to preserve the natural look of the stone and provide protection against staining from environmental causes. It is a water-based sealer with advanced penetrating microbond protection that will keep the memorial looking beautiful and natural for many years to come.

STONETECH stone, tile and masonry care products protect and preserve stone against the damaging effects of everyday living. This particular memorial is in a central location and will be subject to weather, foot traffic and more. By sealing the stone with this advanced solution, durability and longevity are ensured so that generations to come will be aware of the incredible bravery and sacrifice of Deputy Sheriff Pine.

“This was a tough job with a tight turnaround and a number of significant challenges,” says Sean Boyle, senior director of marketing and product management at LATICRETE, “but it was also one that carried a special significance for everyone involved. Having the opportunity to donate these materials and play a part in paying tribute to this officer was truly an honor, and each individual and company was instrumental in making this idea a reality. It really was a full team effort.”

Everyone involved in this project shared a commitment to honoring the memory of Deputy Sheriff Pine in a meaningful and lasting way. All pieces were completed and installed in time to hold the dedication ceremony as planned. The monument provides a beautiful tribute to the officer’s sacrifice and will be a centerpiece of the community for years to come.

Arthur Mintie is senior director, technical services for LATICRETE International Inc. He can be reached at amintie@laticrete.com.

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