Unforgettable Legends: 45 More Badasses From History – Part 5


26Zarrar Ibn al-Azwar

Zarrar Ibn al-Azwar

In 634, when Eastern Roman Empire met Rashidun Caliphate, among them was Zarrar Ibn al-Azwar, who was a tax-collector, but whenever war broke out he was charging the battlefield without armor earning him the nickname of “the half-naked warrior.” During this war, when the caliphate was on the verge of losing, they challenged the Byzantine officers with a series of duels against Azwar. He killed two governors and every other Roman champion, leaving the Roman army with no officers to lead. Caliphate won Syria and Palestine and ruled there for more than 1000 years.

27. A grandma named Sue Aikens lives in total isolation as the manager of river camp north the Arctic Circle in Alaska. She was once attacked by a bear and escaped. Because bears were known to be carriers of bacteria, she cleaned up the wounds, sewed her scalp, reset her dislocated legs, went out again and shot him dead. Then her hips gave out and she could only pull forward. She laid there for 10 days until a pilot found her.

28. Robert Landsburg, while filming Mount St. Helens volcano eruption in 1980 realized he could not survive it, so he rewound the film back into its case, put his camera in his backpack, and then lay on top of the back to protect the film for future researchers.

29. During World War 2, the Japanese were known to execute POWs on a whim if there was even a hint of rescue. So to rescue allied POWs from the Cabanatuan City, in the Philippines, allies devised a ridiculous plan. Capt. Kenneth Schrieber and Lt. Bonnie Rucks flew their P-61 low, backfired their aircraft several times while performing aerobatic maneuvers for 20 minutes over the POW camp. Every Japanese guard watched waiting for them to crash. While they were distracted, several hundred allied soldiers were able to sneak into the camp unnoticed and when the orders came they were able to kill every Japanese soldier within 15 seconds and liberated the camp.

30. In 2014, a 3-year-old Russian girl named Karina Chikitova survived for 11 days in Siberian taiga forest by drinking from a creek and eating berries while being protected by her dog, which went to get help after 9 days and returned with rescuers.

31Bryan Cranston

Bryan Cranston

Bryan Cranston wore a suit of 10,000 live bees while filming an episode of Malcolm in the Middle. He was only stung once. After the writers asked him jokingly if he would be willing to wear a suit of live bees, he said he would, so they wrote a script around the idea.

32. In World War 2, when his submarine sank, John Capes swam 170 feet to the surface and swam 5 miles to shore. He then hid from Italians for 18 months before escaping to Turkey.

33. In 2015, when a Montana man named Chase DelIwo came face-to-face with a 400-pound grizzly bear, he used a tip he had received from his grandmother (large animals have bad gag reflexes) to save his life. He shoved his right arm down the bear’s throat and the bear left him. He survived with a couple of hundred stitches to his head and a punctured leg.

34. When Jimmy Carter was a young nuclear office in the US Navy, they sent him to help a partial meltdown in a Canadian nuclear reactor. They built an exact copy of the reactor to train with and then lowered him into the still extremely radioactive reactor to take it apart one piece at a time.

35. Allstate’s “Mr. Mayhem” Dean Winters has survived 17 surgeries and 9 amputations, including his nose and thumb. He also once died for 2.5 minutes en route to the hospital after contracting a bacterial infection.

36Gotz von Berlichingen

Gotz von Berlichingen

Gotz von Berlichingen was a 16th century Imperial Knight who during one of the battles lost his right hand. He went on to build a new hand out of metal with adjustable fingers with the ability to hold small and large objects, anything from a playing card to a sword. He became a mercenary and fought for the highest bidders, ransomed people and even robbed merchants. With his ill-gotten gains, he eventually bought the Hornberg castle and continued warring into his 60s.

37. Dian Wei was the personal bodyguard to the Wei King Cao Cao during 1st century Imperial China. His last stand took place during the Battle of Wancheng. The local governor had launched a surprise nighttime attack on the King. When the assassins approached the gates they found Dian Wei at the entrance with a pair of 40-pound axes. He killed at least 20 enemies before another group of assassins attacked him from behind and brought him down, but the King had managed to escape.

38. Donnie Yen who is known for playing Wing Chun grandmaster Yip Man in the 2008 film Ip Man once beat up a gang of 8 men who were harassing him and his girlfriend at a nightclub in Hong Kong. The men had to be hospitalized.

39. During the Afghanistan War, when his team was ambushed, outnumbered, and under fire, British Corporal Sean Jones ordered his men to fix bayonets and charge across 80 meters of open ground against Taliban forces. Enemy forces scattered, fleeing the fight due to this unexpected move.

40. During the Second Boer War, Robert Baden-Powell was ordered to secure Mafeking for the British. Because his unit was running low on explosives, he ordered his men to start burying mysterious boxes filled with sand around town’s perimeter, telling people and enemy sympathizers that they were powerful landmines. After running low on barbed wire, he just hammered wooden posts around town border and his men acted around them like there were real barbed wire strung from them. From enemy positions, it looked convincing. They never attacked and Powell held Mafeking for 217 days.

41Eduardo Abaroa Hidalgo

Eduardo Abaroa Hidalgo

Colonel Eduardo Abaroa Hidalgo was a Bolivian hero during the War of the Pacific between Chile, Bolivia, and Peru. He faced death with a “Yo Gramma” joke. After a standoff with Chile, an injured and outnumbered Abaroa was asked to surrender. He refused to give up the fight and responded, “Surrender? Your grandmother should surrender, you bastard!” He died a martyr to his country.

42. During the Battle of Gallipoli during World War 1, Turkish Lt. Colonel Mustafa Kemal learned that allied ships were advancing to his coast and he ordered his men to march there. When he arrived there, he saw Allied warships making landfall and a group of Turkish soldiers running towards him, away from the fight. He told them, “I’m not ordering you to attack! I’m ordering you to die!” In spite of smaller numbers and lesser ammunition, Turks won the battle and Mustafa Kemal went on to become president of the Turkish Republic.

43. A man named Chen Si has devoted his free time to patrolling the Nanjing Yangtze River Bridge Since 2004. It is the most popular suicide site in the world, and he has saved more than 300 people from jumping.

44. Englishman Frank Bickerton fought in both world wars, was drafted into Antarctic expeditions, developed a golf course, was the hero of a novel, killed bears, wrote major motion pictures, a treasure hunter in Costa Rica and married an Earl’s granddaughter.

45. Phillip II of Macedon once said to Sparta: “You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city.” The Spartans replied: “If”. Subsequently, both Philip and Alexander would avoid Sparta entirely.