I’ve often spoken of how much I was inspired when I was a kid by NASA and the astronauts of those early days of space exploration. So it is with great sadness and prayers and sympathy to his family that I have to report the death at age 86 of Alan Bean, who as part of the crew of Apollo 12 became only the fourth man to walk on the moon.
If that had been his only accomplishment, he would still have earned an honored place in history. But that was only one chapter in a remarkable life that included a stint as a Navy test pilot, over 5500 hours of flying time in 27 different types of aircraft, and over 69 days in space, including not only the Apollo moon mission but two months as spacecraft commander of Skylab Mission II. And I haven’t even touched on the incredible artwork he created after he retired, when he used his talent and creativity to share with the world his personal experience of exploring the moon.
Click the link to learn more about this remarkable American hero and why one of his fellow NASA astronauts called Alan Bean “the most extraordinary person I ever met.”