February 6, 2009

Famous alligator gets new home

Officials with Oklahoma's G.W. Exotic Animal Park said workers extracted a celebrity alligator from a backyard pool and brought him to the park.

Joe Schreibvogel, director of the animal park, said friends and relatives of Richard Beamon called park workers to come take the 43-year-old alligator, named Albert, after Beamon died at age 69 Wednesday, The Oklahoman reported.

Park workers said stories from Beamon's family indicate the alligator has appeared on both small and large screens, with roles in the films Eraser and Undercover Blues as well as a Toyota commercial.

Schreibvogel said the 12-foot gator, which workers estimated to weigh more than 800 pounds, had been living in Beamon's southeastern Oklahoma backyard for about eight years and seemed healthy.

He's the biggest I've ever seen, Schreibvogel said. I'm shocked he made it through the cold temperatures.