DFW Man Eyes 13th Eclipse

Laverne Biser | Image by CBS News Texas

When the total solar eclipse descends on North Texas in a few days, one local man will be logging his 13th viewing.

In his 105 years on Earth, Laverne Biser of Fort Worth has seen a dozen solar eclipses. Now, the North Texas native will enjoy his 13th such viewing right here in his hometown.

Earlier this month, The Dallas Express profiled Bob Bedell of Dallas, the self-proclaimed “solar eclipse chaser.” Bedell has witnessed four of the rare events in his lifetime, an impressive achievement in its own right. Biser, like Bedell, enjoyed most eclipse viewings alongside his wife, Marion. Sadly, Marion passed away last year at the age of 97.

Biser’s love of the lunar event is rooted in his fascination with the cosmos, which he developed during high school. He later obtained a mechanical engineering degree from Ohio State University before moving to Fort Worth, where he designed aircraft at Carswell Airforce Base, according to CBS News Texas.

It was not until 1963 that he got the first glimpse of what would become a lifelong obsession. His family drove their white Oldsmobile 2,000 miles from Fort Worth to Maine to witness the event. It was the beginning of Biser’s eclipse-chasing trajectory.

His new hobby would take him to New Mexico, Prince Edward Island, Nebraska, and the Black Sea, among other locations. Fortunately, viewing the April 8 total solar eclipse will not require him to leave Dallas-Fort Worth, given the city’s prime location within the path of totality.

For those new to eclipse viewing, Biser recommends watching the entire eclipse and doing so safely.

“With glasses, watch the whole thing, but take them off when it goes total. Look how pretty it is. You’ll say, ‘Oh… I want to see more of these,'” he said, per CBS.

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