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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Most Extremely Miraculous Survivors

In our life we come across some miraculous and incredible survival stories which leave us in awe and admiration. All such stories teach us one thing that struggle for survival requires will of high magnitude; a desire to live and go back to family. This strong will has miraculously brought people back from death against all odds.

10. A Model Whose Body is Held Together with 11 Metal Rods

The charming and beautiful model, Katrina Burgess survived a fatal car accident which had broken her neck, back and ribs, injured her pelvis and punctured her lungs along with and a number of other injuries. She was driving at 70mph when her car left the M5 and crashed into a ditch. She today is a famous model with 11 metal rods and countless pins and screws in her body. The doctors had to insert rod from her hip to her knee in her left leg the day after she was admitted to hospital. It was secured inside with four titanium pins. A week later, they sliced open her back and inserted six more horizontal rods up the length of her back to support her spine. A week after that, they inserted a titanium screw to the top of her spine to support the break in her neck. She struggled for 5 months before she could live without taking pain killers.

9. Aron Ralston’s Survival

Aron Lee Ralston (born October 27, 1975) a mechanical engineer and an American Mountaineer was forced to amputate his lower right arm to free himself after his arm became trapped by a boulder when he was mountaineering in Utah.
On April 2003, Aron Ralston was climbing in Canyonlands National Park in southeaster Utah when a 800 pound boulder fell on him and pinned his right arm. Ralston had not told anyone of his hiking plans and knew no one would be searching for him. Aron lay pinned for nearly four days before he ran out of water. He was trapped and couldn’t move. He then started drinking his own urine. He carved his name, date of birth and presumed date of death into the sandstone canyon wall, and recorded his last goodbyes to his family in his camera in his video camera. When he was about to die he decided to struggle. He forcibly levered his forearm against a chockstone until both the radius and ulna bones broke. He cut his arm with his dull knife. He then hiked down a 65 foot wall. While hiking out, he encountered a family. The family gave him water and two Oreo cookies. They then alerted the authorities. He was finally rescued by a helicopter search team. The rescue team retrieved his arm, which was cremated later.
In his book, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place” he describes his experiences. The 33-year-old doesn’t fear climbing and continues climbing. His climbing ventures include a 2008 expedition to climb Ojos del Salado and Monte Pissis and all of Colorado’s 55 peaks higher than 14,000 feet. He is also a motivational speaker. He is living a normal life, is married and father of a child. English film director Danny Boyle is currently working on the film 127 Hours about the true story of Ralston.

8. Wenseslao Moguel Survived 9 Bullets in Mexican Revolution


The Mexican Revolution was a 7 years long major armed struggle that started in 1910 led by Francisco I. Madero against Porfirio Diaz. On March 18, 1915 a soldier Wenseslao Moguel was captured while fighting in the revolution. He was sentenced to death without any trial. A firing squad shot him 9 times including a close ranged bullet fired through his head and face shot by an officer to ensure his death. The executers left him there assuming him to be dead. He miraculously managed to escape and lived a lively and energetic life. The above photo shows Moguel in 1937 pointing at his scar on the Ripley’s Believe It Or Not radio show.

7. Woman Gave Birth to Child during Brain Surgery – Both Survived

Yulia Shumakova, a 24 year old Russian girl from the city of Yekaterinburg was brought to the hospital in extremely critical condition when she went unconscious after returning from work one day. She was 32 weeks pregnant at that time. Examination surfaced a dangerous seizure in her brain. Doctors told her husband that 96% of such patients die on their way to the hospital.
“Honestly speaking, I didn’t believe at that point that she would survive,” her husband Aleksandr confessed.
“I spoke to the doctors – they said such diagnosis led to death in 96 per cent of cases. People die in the ambulance, and almost never make it to the hospital”.
Doctors decided to do a brain surgery along with a Caesarian Section. Chances were minute but the mother the child and the doctor’s struggle successfully defeated death. May be it was a mother’s love for her child which gave her the energy and will to struggle death and come back to life to hold her son in her arms. Baby was born prematurely but he survived.

6. Frank Selak Encountered Eight Deadliest Accidents in His Life


Frank Selak a Croatian music teacher can be considered the luckiest man on earth. He can’t travel in a plane, bus, train because he survived many accidents including train derailment into icy waters, a bus crash, the door blowing off a plane he was on, two cars catching fire while he was driving and if that’s not enough, he drove off a mountain road and landed in a tree while he watched his car continue down and explode 300 feet below. He won a million dollars lottery.

5. A Man Nearly Cut in Two after Falling From a Train

The accident took place in June 2006 when Truman Duncan, a railroad switchman was working at his job in the rail yards of Cleburne, Texas. He slipped and fell onto the tracks while riding on the front of a train car that was moving toward a repair dock. He tried not to be run over by the train but got caught in the undercarriage, and was run over by steel wheels supporting 20,000 pounds of dead weight. The train dragged him 75 Feet and he got entangled in the wheels. His body was nearly cut in half. The accident took his right leg as well as his left leg, pelvis and kidney. He called 911, waited for 45 minutes and survived 23 surgeries. He is living a lively and cheerful life.

4. Juliane Koepcke Who Survived Lightning and Plane Crash

If asked what would you find more dangerous; being struck by lightning or being in a plane which crashed or being thrown out of a flying plane?  Juliane Koepcke a high school student survived all three of these in the crash of LANSA Flight 508 in the Peruvian rainforest when the plane was struck by lightning on December 24 1971. She was blown out of the plane still strapped to her seat. She was the only survivor among the 93 passengers. She landed 2 miles away with an eye injury, a broken collarbone and cuts and bruises. Her father was a biologist and he had once told her that what flows downstream and where there is water, there is life. She remembered this and starting following the flow of water.  She had to trek for 9 days with her injuries and no food till she found a small cabin where she cleaned her wounds and waited till help reached her. Later she became a zoologist. Her survival story became the subject of two films, the first being the 1974 Giuseppe Maria Scotese film Miracoli accadono ancora (Miracles Still Happen) and Wings of Hope by Werner Herzog.

3. Earthquake Survivor Remained Buried for 27 Days

Khaleed Hussain, a 20 year old farm worker was recovered alive from the debris of his house after the October 8 earthquake in Pakistan. He was buried under his house pinned in painful position beneath a wooden beam and rocks. He was totally trapped and could only move his arms slightly. The perpetual digging motion of his hands even after his rescue shows the pain and the horror he had endured. Miraculously he was rescued alive on November the 10th by a young man. His right leg was broken at several places.

2. Baby with Rare Tumor Born Twice

Keri McCartney was four months pregnant when the doctors found a dangerous tumor of the size of a grapefruit on baby’s body. This tumor was stopping the blood flow and weakening her heart. Doctors decided to make an attempt to save the child. Surgeons at Texas Children’s Fetal Center cut into McCartney’s abdomen and pulled half of the body of the baby out to remove the life-threatening mass. The procedure was done quickly and then the baby was put back in the womb. Miraculously the baby survived and there were no complications for the next 10 weeks after which the baby was welcomed into the world for the second time. She was named Macie Hope McCartney as she survived a fatal tumor which affects 1 in 35,000 babies.

1. 72 Days Survival after a Plane Crash

Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571, also known as the Andes flight disaster, and in South America as Miracle in the Andes crashed in Andes on October 13, 1972. It was carrying 45 people including a rugby team and their friends and family. The painful struggle against survival continued for 72 days and only 16 managed to win the fight against death. They were rescued on December 23, 1972. Around 10 passengers died in the crash. Food supply was short and weather conditions were extreme. Many died due to cold. Another eight were killed by an avalanche that swept over their shelter in the wreckage.
The survivors had little food and no source of heat in the harsh conditions, at over 3,600 meters (11,800 ft). They were willing to struggle even after hearing the radio news reports that the search for them had been abandoned. The survivors had no choice but to eat the dead passengers who had been preserved in the snow. Two passengers Nando Parrado and Robert Canessa travelled for 12 days and found a Chilean huaso. He alerted the authorities about the existence of the the survivors. Later a book was written and a movie was filmed on account of the survivors.

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