These 22 people all have something in common. They are extremely lucky to be alive! Logic tells us that they should have died in the accidents they were in, but they didn’t. Even when people get in a car accident going the speed limit, they have more injuries than these people received. Can you call it luck? Divine intervention? Fate? Whatever you believe or want to call it, I think you will agree with me that it is simply amazing they survived these accidents. They should be thanking their lucky stars!
1. Josh Hanson – In 2007, Josh was attending a dart-throwing convention at the Minneapolis Hyatt. One night he had a few too many and fell through a double pane window. He dropped 160 feet and all he sustained was a broken leg, two collapsed lungs, and serious bruising.
2. Steve Fossett – Steve Fossett fell from his hot air balloon at 22,000 feet. Not only did he survive this fall, but he fell into shark infested waters and survived that as well. The professional hot air balloonist had luck on his side that day and did not become shark bait.
3. Roger Woodward – When he was a child, Roger went on vacation with his family to Niagara Falls. He was involved in a boating accident causing him to fall into the water and get swept over the falls. He was wearing only a life jacket. He is the youngest person to go over the falls unprotected and survive. His 17-year-old sister Deanne was with him at the time of the accident, but was saved from going over the falls by a bystander on the banks of the river. The boat operator, who did not have a life jacket on and did go over the falls with Roger, drowned.
4. Danny Yamashiro – On December 22, 1985, Danny and his girlfriend climbed Nuuanu Pali Mountain located in beautiful Hawaii. During the hike, Danny attempted to help his girlfriend who had become stranded. He fell head first 300 feet down the mountain. And as if the first time were not enough, he fell a second time for another 100 feet.
5. Cliff Judkins – Pilot Cliff Judkins survived a 15,000 feet drop while flying an F-8 fighter. An accident while refueling mid-air forced him to jump from his aircraft. His parachute failed to deploy and he sustained a broken back, ankles, pelvis, and a collapsed lung. You can also add kidney and intestine failure to that list, but he survived!
6. Frane Selak – Frane was a Croatian music teacher. Some may call him a very lucky man. He has escaped death 7 times and has also won the lottery. One year, he was sucked out of a malfunctioning plane door and landed in a haystack. The plane crashed, killing 16 people. I wonder if you ask him if he considers himself lucky, what his answer would be.
7. James Boole – While he was sky-diving, James survived a fall of 6,000 feet without a parachute. He suffered a broken back and multiple broken ribs. It’s estimated that when he hit the ground, he was going 60mph. It is surprising he did not have more injuries.
8. Kevin Hines – Kevin survived jumping off of the Golden Gate Bridge. There are more suicides committed there than almost anywhere else in the world. Kevin wanted to end his life, so he jumped from a height of 245ft. On the way down, he suddenly changed his body position and went into the water, feet first. It must not have been his time to go.
9. Chris Saggers – Chris was a window washer. He fell from the 22nd floor of the Salford Tower Blocks in Britain. He landed right on top of a car. He immediately stood up and told some passersby that he was “fine.” He only had a broken elbow. Amazing!
10. Alcides Moreno – Alcides, also a window washer, was working when a malfunction caused the platform to send him and his brother, Edgar, down 47 stories. Alcides survived, but tragically his brother Edgar died.
11. Lareece Butler – Lareece was on a routine skydiving jump when her parachutes failed. She prayed to God on her way down, asking him to save her. She fell 3,000 feet to the ground. She only broke her leg and suffered a concussion. She believes God saved her.
12. Alan Magee – Alan was a B-17 bomber pilot in WWII. His plane was shot down when German fighters damaged the right-wing of his plane, causing him to fall 22,000 feet before crashing through the glass roof of the St. Nazarine Railroad Station. He had 28 shrapnel wounds and several broken bones.
13. Hans Lange – Base jumper Hans Lange leapt from Bjoerkentind Mountain using his wing suit. The jump did not go at all as planned. He got too close to the mountain wall, going at least 100mph. He hit the mountain multiple times, painfully ricocheting down. He ended up only breaking his leg.
14. Dave Hodgman – Dave was sky diving with a group, but at 2,500 feet he became tangled with another diver who then deployed his chute. The two sky divers fell to Earth. Both of them survived the fall.
15. Gareth Griffiths – Professional rugby player Gareth Griffiths survived a fall from the sky. He has Michael Costello to thank for it. Michael was Gareth’s instructor. During the jump, their parachutes failed to deploy. Seconds before they hit the ground, Michael twisted his body, placing it between Gareth and the ground. That decision saved Gareth’s life.
16. Nicholas Alkemade – Flight Sergeant Nicholas Alkemade fell 18,000 feet from his plane. There was a fire on the plane that had destroyed every parachute, so he was forced to jump without one. He ended up falling into a patch of pine trees and only sprained his leg.
17. Christine McKenzie – Christine survived a 2 mile fall into power lines. The veteran skydiver was on her 112th jump at the time. Both her main and reserve parachutes failed to deploy. She was in free fall from 11,000 feet. She hit power lines, which slowed her fall enough to help save her life.
18. Joe Herman – Joe was a Royal Australian Air Force pilot. He was in his bomber when it was blown up. He was thrown from it and thrown into the sky. Fellow pilot John Vivash was in the process of pulling his ripcord near him, so Joe grabbed onto his leg. He survived the fall and only endured a couple of broken ribs. That is good timing.
19. Juliane Koepcke – Juliane’s LANSA flight 508 crashed into an Amazon rainforest on Christmas Eve, of all days. She fell from a height of 10,000 feet before falling into the forest. She was the one and only survivor of the crash.
20. Ivan Chisov – In order to avoid German fighters, Lieutenant Ivan Chisov jumped from his damaged Ilyushin Il-4 bomber at an altitude of about 22,000 feet. Before he could use his parachute, he passed out. At 120-150 mph, he hit the edge of a snowy ravine. He injured his spine and broke his pelvis.
21. Russian Base Jumper – This is an unidentified base jumper that survived a fall from a 400ft tower into snow. He suffered a broken vertebrate, pelvis, and legs. Most believe that if it weren’t for the snow, he would be dead.
22. Michael Holmes – Michael was the youngest British person to be qualified as a skydiving instructor. His career was almost cut short when he fell 15,000 feet. His parachute failed and he fell into bushes at 100mph. He survived with only a punctured lung and shattered ankle.
23. Vesna Vulovic: Vesna, a 22 year-old Yugoslav airlines flight attendant, was aboard a plane when it exploded because of a hidden bomb. She was in the tail section at the time of the incident. She fell 33,000 feet into a snow-covered mountain, but survived. She holds the Guinness World Record for surviving the highest fall without a parachute.
24. Shayna Richardson: Shayna Richardson was taking her first solo jump when her parachutes failed; she raced towards earth at 150 mph from a height of about 10,000 feet. She slammed into the asphalt, face-first. Miraculously, she survived… and so did the unborn child she didn’t even know she was carrying.
It would be interesting to do a follow-up on all of these people and see what they did with their lives after these accidents; how living changed things for them. Especially the man who tried to end his life by jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge. It seems obvious to me that is was not their time to leave this Earth and they were meant to stay and do great things. Or maybe they were meant to stay and do ordinary everyday things. Because everything done in life matters. Every little bit counts in my book.