During the Vietnam War, a helicopter pilot named Hugh Thompson landed his helicopter in the line of fire to confront and stop American troops who had by that point killed close to 500 unarmed civilians in the My Lai Massacre. He even threatened to fire on his own troops if they continued their attack. He was labeled a traitor by Congress and ordered not to speak about the event.
Iqbal Masih was a kid in Pakistan who was sold into bondage. At the age of 10, he escaped the shackles of bonded labor, freed over 3000 children who were trapped in the same carpet factory he worked in. He was responsible for bringing down Pakistan's carpet exports by $34 million and was therefore murdered in 1995 at the age of 13.
Miyamoto Musashi was a 17th-century Japanese swordsman. He had such faith in his own swordsmanship that he used a wooden sword regardless of the foe's weapon. He twice arrived late to duels and defeated both opponents. Upon his next duel, he arrived early and ambushed the force that was assembling to ambush him. He is also said to have killed an opponent with a sword that legend says he carved from an oar.
During WW1, a homing pigeon named Cher Ami was awarded the Croix de Guerre for its service. The pigeon saved 194 men by continuing her flight to deliver an S.O.S. message despite having been shot through the breast, blinded in one eye, covered in blood and with a leg hanging only by a tendon.
59/11 Fighter Jets
On 9/11, after both the towers were hit, some jet fighters took to the air without any live ammunition knowing that to prevent the hijackers from striking anymore intended targets, the pilots might have to intercept and crash their fighters into the hijacked planes, ejecting at the last moment.
In 1939, a stockbroker named Nicholas Winton brought 669 Czechoslovakian Jewish children to England on the eve of Second World War, saving their lives. He refused to take credit for his deed until his wife found a scrapbook of the children that he saved and gave it to the BBC. He died in 2015 at the age of 106.
Two nights before he broke the sound barrier, Chuck Yeager fell off a horse and broke his ribs. He didn't tell anyone because he didn't want to be taken off the mission. He had a local veterinarian tape him up.
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In 1988, a 2.5-year-old girl named Michelle Funk fell into an icy creek and was submerged for 66 minutes. When rescuers arrived she didn't have a pulse and was not breathing. Three hours after that, her blood was warmed. When it reached 71 degrees Fahrenheit, she came back to life and is still living to this day
Manute Bol, the tallest player in the history of the NBA was also the only player in the NBA to have killed a lion with a spear and to have paid 80 cows for his wife.
In 2009, when 18-year old Rukhsana Kausar from Kashmir, India saw her parents being beaten as part of a forced marriage proposal by a militia commander, she killed one militant with an ax, gunned the commander down and then started a 4-hour gun battle with the militia.