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Wednesday April 17, 2024

Stars align for 105-year-old's 13th total solar eclipse

105-year-old LaVerne Biser prepares for his 13th consecutive total solar eclipse in Plano, Texas

By Web Desk
March 31, 2024
105-year-old astronomer gets ready for 13th total solar eclipse spectacle. (Laverne Biser created a platform that housed three cameras to capture the total solar eclipse in Beatrice, Nebraska in 2017. — Biser family)
105-year-old astronomer gets ready for 13th total solar eclipse spectacle. (Laverne Biser created a platform that housed three cameras to capture the total solar eclipse in Beatrice, Nebraska in 2017. — Biser family) 

Amateur astronomer LaVerne Biser from Texas is all set to witness his 13th total solar eclipse this year.

The total solar eclipse will take place on April 8, 2024. The amazing event will be seen along a narrow path from Texas to Maine in the United States.

Biser has witnessed solar eclipses in 1963, 1972, ‘79, ’84, ‘88, ’91, ‘94, ’98, '99, 2012, 2017, and 2023. Now, he will watch his 13th consecutive total solar eclipse in Plano, Texas.

Hailing from Troy, Ohio, the 105-year-old avid eclipse enthusiast said that his fascination with space began on his family's farmland when he saw the Milky Way as a child. Biser currently lives in West Fort Worth, Texas.

LaVerne Biser has always loved learning about space. He spends his time constructing his own tools to see the stars.

"Growing up, we were familiar with Orion’s shield, the Big Dipper … all the G5 constellations," Biser said.

Biser has built multiple special telescopes to see stars better.

For many years, he travelled across the all over the world to see amazing eclipses along with his wife. After his wife passed away in January 2023, Biser will be joined by his daughter and granddaughter for the upcoming celestial event in Plano, Texas.

Biser reflects on past experiences and awe-inspiring moments that he shared with his wife during their travels to witness eclipses worldwide, from the shores of Brazil to the landscapes of Bali. Biser considers eclipses to be incredibly beautiful. He encourages everyone to view them safely with special glasses.

"You see one, you want to see them all and will do everything you can to see them," Biser said. "They're so beautiful."

"We've been all over the world tracking them down," he said. "If there were an eclipse coming up, I would time my vacation so we could go there," Biser said.

The elderly astronomer still cherishes the memory of his journey to Williston, North Dakota on February 26, 1979, to witness a total solar eclipse. He still fondly recalls the memory to this day.

As he approaches his 106th birthday, the retired engineer attributes his long life to healthy living and hopes to keep gazing at the stars for many years to come.