Inventor, Deceased Person
1915 – 2005
Who was Andrew Toti?
Andrew J. Toti was a world-renowned American inventor. Toti was born in Visalia, California, and died in Modesto, California. He held more than 500 U.S. patents at the time of his death. Toti was honored by the Edison Society in 1995.
Among his many inventions, the most famous include an inflatable lifejacket, an automated chicken plucker, light-weight construction beam, and the EndoFlex endotracheal tube. He invented a combination lock when he was 12 years old.
Toti related that his mother was the inspiration for the invention of the Mae West life vest. He had built a boat, and his mother was worried because he couldn't swim. He designed a personal life preserver filled with duck feathers. However, that was too bulky and heavy, so he used air. Toti sold the rights to the Mae West life vest to the US War Department in 1936 for $1,600.