Last Founding Member of Cowboy Artists of America Dies at 74

April 29, 2006 - Posted at 12:39 p.m. CST

PHOENIX (AP) _ A Joplin native known for his cowboy-inspired art

has died in Arizona.

Joe Beeler was 74.

A friend says he was branding cattle Wednesday, when slumped

forward in his saddle and died of a heart attack.

The painter and sculptor was the last remaining founding member

of the Cowboy Artists of America. Beeler and three others created

the group in 1965. It has grown to include two dozen artists.

The group has an annual show in October at the Phoenix Art

Museum, where their work sells for up to six figures.

He is survived by a brother, two children and one grandchild.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)