45 Facts About Alan Bean


Alan LaVern Bean was an American naval officer and aviator, aeronautical engineer, test pilot, NASA astronaut and painter.


Alan Bean was selected to become an astronaut by NASA in 1963 as part of Astronaut Group 3, and was the fourth person to walk on the Moon.


Alan Bean received his naval aviator wings in 1956 and served as a fighter pilot.


Alan Bean made his first flight into space aboard Apollo 12, the second crewed mission to land on the Moon, at age 37 in November 1969.


Alan Bean made his second and final flight into space on the Skylab 3 mission in 1973, the second crewed mission to the Skylab space station.


Alan Bean was the last living crew member of Apollo 12.


Alan Bean was a Boy Scout and he earned the rank of First Class.


Alan Bean graduated from R L Paschal High School in Fort Worth, Texas, in 1949.


Alan Bean received a Bachelor of Science degree in aeronautical engineering from the University of Texas at Austin in 1955, where he attended on a Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps scholarship.


Alan Bean was an Electronics Technician Striker at the NAS Dallas, Texas, until September 1950, when he was honorably discharged.


In January 1955, Alan Bean was commissioned a US Navy ensign through the NROTC at the University of Texas at Austin, and attended flight training.


Alan Bean took art classes at St Mary's College of Maryland during this tour, and flew as a test pilot on several types of naval aircraft.


Alan Bean logged more than 7,145 hours of flying time, including 4,890 hours in jet aircraft.


Alan Bean was selected by NASA as part of Astronaut Group 3 in 1963.


Alan Bean was selected to be the backup command pilot for Gemini 10, but was unsuccessful in securing an early Apollo flight assignment.


Alan Bean was placed in the Apollo Applications Program in the interim.


Alan Bean was the Apollo Lunar Module pilot on Apollo 12, the second lunar landing.


Alan Bean was the astronaut who executed John Aaron's "Flight, try SCE to 'Aux'" instruction to restore telemetry after the spacecraft was struck by lightning 36 seconds after launch, thus salvaging the mission.


Alan Bean had planned on using a self-timer for his Hasselblad camera to take a photograph of both Pete Conrad and himself while on the lunar surface near the Surveyor III spacecraft.


Alan Bean was hoping to record a good photo, and to confuse the mission scientists as to how the photo could have been taken.


Alan Bean's suit is on display in the National Air and Space Museum.


Alan Bean was the spacecraft commander of Skylab 3, the second crewed mission to Skylab, from July 29 to September 25,1973.


On his next assignment, Alan Bean was the backup spacecraft commander of the United States flight crew for the joint American-Russian Apollo-Soyuz Test Project.


Alan Bean retired from the Navy in October 1975 as a captain, and continued as head of the Astronaut Candidate Operations and Training Group within the Astronaut Office in a civilian capacity.


Alan Bean logged 1,671 hours and 45 minutes in space while at NASA, of which 10 hours and 26 minutes were spent in EVAs on the Moon and in Earth orbit.


Alan Bean resigned from NASA in June 1981 to devote his time to painting.


Alan Bean said his decision was based on that, in his 18 years as an astronaut, he was fortunate enough to visit worlds and see sights no artist's eye, past or present, has ever viewed firsthand and he hoped to express these experiences through his art.


Alan Bean's paintings include Lunar Grand Prix and Rock and Roll on the Ocean of Storms, and he used real Moon dust in his paintings.


Alan Bean added tiny pieces of the patches to his paintings, which made them unique.


Alan Bean used a hammer, used to pound the flagpole into the lunar surface, and a bronzed Moon boot to texture his paintings.


In July 2009, for the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing, Alan Bean exhibited his lunar paintings at the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum in Washington.


Alan Bean took a piece of Clan MacAlan Bean tartan to the Moon.


Alan Bean married Sue Ragsdale, a fellow graduate of the University of Texas on April 19,1955, shortly before her graduation.


Alan Bean died on May 26,2018, in Houston, Texas, at the age of 86.


Alan Bean's death followed the sudden onset of illness two weeks before while he was in Fort Wayne, Indiana.


At the time of his death, Alan Bean was married to his second wife, Leslie, and was survived by his sister, Paula Scott.


Alan Bean was interred in Arlington National Cemetery on November 8,2018.


Alan Bean was awarded with several awards and decorations during his career.


Alan Bean received the Rear Admiral William S Parsons Award for Scientific and Technical Progress, the Godfrey L Cabot Award for 1970, the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Trustees Award, the V M Komarov Diploma for 1973 and the AAS Flight Achievement Award for 1974.


Alan Bean received the Navy Astronaut Wings, the Navy Distinguished Service Medal, the NASA Distinguished Service Medal, and the National Defense Service Medal with bronze star.


Alan Bean was a fellow of the American Astronautical Society and a member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots.


Alan Bean received the University of Texas Distinguished Alumnus Award in 1970 and the Distinguished Engineering Graduate Award.


Alan Bean was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Science from Texas Wesleyan College in 1972, and was presented an Honorary Doctorate of Engineering Science degree from the University of Akron in 1974.


Alan Bean was the recipient of Federation Aeronautique Internationale's prestigious Yuri Gagarin Gold Medal for 1973 in Sydney, Australia.


Alan Bean was a co-recipient of AIAA's Octave Chanute Award for 1975, along with fellow Skylab 3 astronauts Jack Lousma and Owen Garriott.