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Awaiting surgery, family starts fund for travel costs


TOWNSEND — Bill Biswanger knew he might have a problem with his heart.

His own father died at a young age, mid 40s, said Biswanger’s daughter Sandy Oser. His mother died a couple of years ago of a heart attack. She was in her 90s.

Having this medical history has been nerve-wracking for Biswanger and his siblings, Oser said. Getting the right medical treatment has been essential.

“He listened to his body,” Oser said. “He pushed and pushed and pushed” until he got the care he needed.

Last week he had a procedure and has remained in the hospital since. He was scheduled for open-heart surgery Nov. 18, after the drugs used in the first procedure had worn off.

“It’s just been a waiting game,” Oser said the evening before the surgery. “He’s at a very, very high risk of a heart attack.”

Biswanger and his family know about medical emergencies. He is an emergency medical technician. So is Oser. Both worked with the Townsend Fire Department.

Jean Taubert, Biswanger’s close friend, has been at his side since the ordeal began. She is a paramedic for the Pepperell Fire Department. When she worked in Townsend she was a leader in bringing the advanced life support vehicle to that department, Oser said.

Traveling back and forth to the hospital is expensive. Oser set up a Go Fund Me account to help Taubert when she visits Biswanger at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center in Brighton.

Within a day, eight people donated, raising $250. The original goal was $200.

“Everybody’s been so generous,” Oser said.

“Thank you to those who have donated,” she wrote on Facebook. “You have amazing hearts and we are grateful!”

A sportsman heavily involved in hunting and fishing, Biswanger has been a sports and wildlife columnist for Nashoba Publishing and the Lowell Sun.

To donate toward family travel expenses, visit:

Follow Anne O’Connor on Twitter and Tout @a1oconnor.