Columnist Leonard David

Statue Dedicated to Apollo 12 Moonwalker Alan Bean

Alan Bean Statue Autorgraphed Photo
A photo of a new statue of Apollo astronaut Alan Bean was signed by Bean himself. (Image credit: Erica Burrell Design/Wheeler Historical Museum)

The Wheeler Historical Museum in Wheeler, Texas is preparing to unveil a statue dedicated to Apollo 12 moonwalker Alan Bean.

Bean became the fourth man to set foot on the moon in November 1969. He explored the desolate landscape of the Ocean of Storms. His Apollo 12 adventure was followed by being commander of Skylab Mission II in 1973, spending 59 days in Earth orbit.

Alan Bean resigned from NASA in 1981 to devote all of his time and energy to painting, capturing his experiences on the moon.


Apollo moonwalker Alan Bean (Image credit: Erica Burrell Design/Wheeler Historical Museum)

As a Wheeler, Texas legendary artist and astronaut, Bean spoke at a St. Patrick's Day Banquet in Shamrock, Texas on March 13, then a day later was Marshall of the 69th Annual St. Patrick's Parade. That same day the Wheeler Historical Museum honored his presence with a reception and dedication of the Alan Bean statue: "Tiptoeing on the Ocean of Storms." [Alan Bean: Moonwalker's Emotions Color the Gray Moon (Video)]


The American Legion building which is located on U.S. Hwy 83, along the northern edge of the city of Wheeler, Texas, has been preserved and rehabilitated to house the Wheeler Historical Museum.

"The new statue in Wheeler, the Johnson Space Center, and SpaceX's announcement that it is building a launch facility in Brownsville bodes well for space tourism in Texas," observed Stew Magnuson, author of the enlightening book, "The Last American Highway: A Journey Through Time Down U.S. Route 83."

"U.S. Highway 83 as it passes through Wheeler is named Alan Bean Boulevard," Magnuson told Inside Outer Space.

Swift Hill Productions traveled to Houston, Texas to interview Alan L. Bean. In this promo Bean talks about his birth in Wheeler, Texas and the importance of the future. To see the interview, visit:

Leonard David has been reporting on the space industry for more than five decades. He is former director of research for the National Commission on Space and is co-author of Buzz Aldrin's 2013 book "Mission to Mars – My Vision for Space Exploration," published by National Geographic, with a new updated paperback version to be released in May. Follow us @Spacedotcom, Facebook and Google+.

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Leonard David
Space Insider Columnist

Leonard David is an award-winning space journalist who has been reporting on space activities for more than 50 years. Currently writing as's Space Insider Columnist among his other projects, Leonard has authored numerous books on space exploration, Mars missions and more, with his latest being "Moon Rush: The New Space Race" published in 2019 by National Geographic. He also wrote "Mars: Our Future on the Red Planet" released in 2016 by National Geographic. Leonard  has served as a correspondent for SpaceNews, Scientific American and Aerospace America for the AIAA. He has received many awards, including the first Ordway Award for Sustained Excellence in Spaceflight History in 2015 at the AAS Wernher von Braun Memorial Symposium. You can find out Leonard's latest project at his website and on Twitter.