Guarding the entrance to Westward Village RV Park.

Muffler Man - Mutant

Field review by the editors.

Yuma, Arizona

Type: Cowboy (shorter than normal)

Arm position: Standard

Accessories: Rifle, Stetson Hat

Improvised Head

The fiberglass rifleman has stood his ground at the entrance to Westward Village RV Park since 1982. We classify this particular strain of Muffler Man as a Mutant because of its non-standard aspects, most notably its puffy, misshapen head attached to a torso by a scrawny, makeshift neck. In the 1990s, he reminded us of the beneficiary of Civil War-era plastic surgery.

History

The statue started as a Cowboy, circa 1966, appearing at Phillips 66 gas stations in Dodge City, Kansas. In 1971 it was moved to Boot Hill and served as a promotional rifleman, and appeared on a post card. The original owner of Yuma's Westward Village, Don Trigg, bought the figure at an auction in Dodge City in 1982. The head was already damaged from successive decapitations by college pranksters, so Trigg restored it, even adding a motor inside so it would swivel (though this mechanism was never actually used in the Yuma display). The swivel engineering might be responsible for the odd neck join, and the still still hideous head got blotchier in the Arizona sun. Westward Village was purchased from Trigg in 1998, and its tattered cowboy sentinel remained.

Restoration

Mutant head, 1990s.
Mutant head, 1990s.

In 2006, a local artist was reported to have restored the figure, with fresh paint and more surgery performed on troubled parts.

In the shade of his hat, the rifleman's painted-on eyes and Michael Jackson nose and lips aren't as shocking now.

Muffler Man - Mutant

Westward Village RV Park

Address:
3300 S. 8th Ave., Yuma, AZ
Directions:
At the entrance to the Westward Village RV Park. I-8 exit 2. West on US 95/16th St. for one mile. Left onto 4th Ave./Business 8 for a little over 1.5 miles, then turn right onto Catalina Drive, then left onto 8th Ave. The Muffler Man is a half-mile ahead, right side, just past 32nd St. and the Toys R Us.
Phone:
928-726-1417
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
Save to My Sights

Nearby Offbeat Places

Territorial PrisonTerritorial Prison, Yuma, AZ - 4 mi.
Giant Diamond RingGiant Diamond Ring, Winterhaven, CA - 5 mi.
Official Center of the WorldOfficial Center of the World, Felicity, CA - 10 mi.
In the region:
World's Tallest Flag Pole, Calipatria, CA - 61 mi.

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January 19, 2019

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