A 58-year-old Taunton man has died of Eastern equine encephalitis, his family said, making him the latest victim of the dangerous mosquito-borne virus that has killed at least three other Massachusetts residents this year.
Scott Mosman died about 3 a.m. on Friday in hospice care after being treated for the disease at Rhode Island Hospital in Providence, according to his brother, Keith Mosman. Scott Mosman, who worked in environmental remediation for 30 years, had been diagnosed with the illness more than a month earlier.
“He was a good guy, taken too young,” Keith Mosman, a 60-year-old Raynham resident, said. “He fought like a son-of-a-gun.”
The state Department of Public Health did not respond to requests for information about Mosman’s case Sunday night. The agency this year has reported 12 confirmed cases of the rare but deadly disease.
Three of those patients had died before the latest fatality. Two men in their 70s, one from Freetown and another from Hampden County, died of EEE in September. A Fairhaven woman in her 50s died from EEE in August, officials have said.
EEE causes brain inflammation and is transmitted to humans bitten by infected mosquitoes, according to federal authorities. There is no cure for the disease, and those who recover from it often live with severe neurological complications.
Scott Mosman lost consciousness and was taken to Morton Hospital in Taunton on Sept. 6, according to his brother. He was then transferred to Rhode Island Hospital, where he was diagnosed with EEE.
No one knows when or where Mosman was bitten by the disease-carrying mosquito, his brother said.
“You never even think about it,” Keith Mosman said. “Think about the last time you got bit by a mosquito.”
Scott Mosman’s family ultimately chose to place him in Season’s Hospice in Milton, Keith Mosman said. His adventurous younger brother never would have wanted to spend his final days in a hospital bed, he said.
“It killed us to see him in bed with all those tubes,” Mosman said.
Mosman described his brother as an innovative thinker who loved coming up with creative projects. He was tough, and after overcoming a long-undiagnosed case of dyslexia, he went on to earn an engineering degree, his brother said.
Though he suffered from illnesses on and off over his last few years, Scott Mosman enjoyed athletic pursuits. He was a top wrestler while attending Bridgewater-Raynham Regional High School and he loved sailing and mountain biking trips.
Scott Mosman’s family celebrated his 58th birthday on Sept. 17 in the hospital. Keith Mosman recalled singing him “Happy Birthday,” something his brother never would have stood for while healthy.
“You couldn’t even buy him a present,” Keith Mosman said. “He was a giver, not a taker. He would give you the shirt off his back in a blizzard if you were cold.”
Mosman said family and friends are trying to raise money to help put his son, Justin, through college. The family plans to hold a service for Scott Mosman in Raynham on Sunday.
Abigail Feldman can be reached at email@example.com