Whether you refer to it as a stroke of luck or a coincidence of fate, the fact remains that for these 10 incredible men and women from across the world, it was simply not their time to die.
Not only did they survive everything from being struck by lightning to falling out of planes, but they did so in ways that are truly remarkable, these are stories and feats of survival that will stand the test of time.
When compared to what they have gone through, you may realize that even your worst day in this life is actually one of the best days after all. Take a look at what these ten unfortunates had to endure, you may well gasp at their bad luck. Then wonder at how they turned the tables and survived to tell the tale.
10. Roy Sullivan Park Ranger
Roy was a park ranger and if you ever asked Roy Sullivan what his lucky number in life was, it’s very likely that he wouldn’t have said seven. Since over the course of a decade this park ranger was blasted by lightning seven times in total on seven separate occasions. He eventually used a shotgun to take his own life, so the lightening did not kill him but the shotgun certainly did!
9. Vesna Vulvoic Flight Attendant
Vesna Vulvoic was working as a flight attendant when her plane exploded high in the sky. Some 40 years ago, the plane that she was flying on fell all the way from 33,000 feet in the air to the ground. Vesna who was the sole survivor of that doomed voyage across the skies has no recollection of the event. After being found among the wreckage of the aircraft she went on to survive a coma and recovered from paralysis. Of course some doubt her story, since considering how well Vesna recovered the true events may have been embellished somewhat.
8. Frane Selak
Depending on how you look at Frane Selak’s life story, he is either the luckiest or the unluckiest man one could ever meet these days. He’s survived tragedies ranging from train derailments and plane crashes to fuel tank explosions and bus crashes to name but a few. Frane has lived an eventful time in life and he’s also managed to win the lottery, so it’s fair to say that he has been around the block in life.
7. Aron Ralston Climber
Aron Ralston’s story is so astounding that it was made into a major Hollywood movie called 127 hours in which actor James Franco played the lead role. Aron Ralston was pinned beneath a boulder and suffered from serious delirium and dehydration. He managed to survive injured and alone for 127 hours before he decided to snap his arm and cut it off with a dull blade. Since it was either lose the arm or perish, he chose to relinquish his arm, fair play!
6. Mauro Prosperi Long Distance Runner
Have you ever been thirsty enough to drink your own urine? Well, when a massive windstorm blew Prosperi off of the path as he attempted to complete The Marathon of Sands in Morocco, he had no other choice. He managed to run several hundred kilometers to Algeria, took shelter in an abandoned mosque and survived off of resident bats. He was later found by a nomadic family after a failed suicide attempt.
5. Anatoli Bugorski Physicist
Forget about trying out botox or plastic surgery to maintain youth. If your face gets hit by a high energy particle beam and you are lucky enough to actually survive then your face will look forever young. This is what happened to physicist Anatoli Petrovich Bugorski, who is the only person in the world ever to place his head in an active particle accelerator and live to tell the tale.
It happened when researcher Bugorski decided to fix a malfunctioning particle accelerator. So naturally he stuck his head into the machine and exposed his brain to 600 rads. Since it only takes 500 rads to kill someone it was of little surprise when his face swelled and peeled over the coming days. He can no longer move the left side of his face and escaped serious injury, although his face is wrinkle-free, every cloud and all!
4. Stella Morris Rugby Team
What would do if stranded on a mountain without access to food? Well, the Stella Morris Rugby team had to answer this tough question when their plane crashed into the Andes while traveling from Chile to Uruguay. They were able to survive 72 days by eating the bodies of their fellow teammates. Eventually, they found help on the other side of the mountain. Their incredible survival in the cold Andes and unenviable experience was later made into the popular feature film, ‘Alive’ back in 1992.
3. Helen Klaben
When Klaben and Ralph Flores’ plane crashed in the dense Yukon wilderness, they spent the next 42 days without food. The single-engine aircraft went down as a result of pilot error. Flores eventually created an SOS sign which aided in their rescue. Klaben came away with a crushed foot, a significant amount of weight loss and minor celebrity. Walking away from a serious plane crash after all is not something that many get to do.
2. Poon Lim Sailor Lost at Sea
Lim is one of the most remarkable survival stories to date. Just as his merchant ship was sinking at sea, he managed to grab a few idle cans of food and water which he would live off of for the next 133 days.
Despite being deserted alone for three long months, he had no serious injuries to speak of from his ordeal at sea. Poon Lim was suffering only from a little dehydration. That said, he did develop a distaste for raw fish and we can kind of understand that!
1. Anna Bagenholm Ice Breaker
Anna Bagenholm was a doctor who suffered a serious accident and fell through a sheet of ice while skiing. Being submerged in cold, icy water is no laughing matter. Most people facing this awful life or death predicament do not survive.
Yet Anna managed to last underwater for some 80 minutes after managing to find a tiny air pocket below the ice. The problem now was the extreme cold, since as she waited for rescuers her body temperature dropped to 57 degrees. Anna now holds a record for the lowest surviving body temperature ever recorded. This lady seriously knows how to chill.
These are all amazing survival stories. Yet one cannot help but wonder that good fortune was smiling down upon most of these individuals. Be sure to share these shocking stories and just be glad that you are not in their shoes.