History’s 50 Most Awesome Badasses You Should Know About – Part 3

If you haven’t checked out our previous parts, check them out here.

For part 1 click here.

For part 2 click here.

41Alexey Maresyev

Russian fighter pilot Alexey Maresyev's plane was shot down by Germans in 1942 and he crash-landed in enemy territory. Both his legs were severely mangled, but he managed to get himself to friendly turf by crawling for 18 days in the snow. His legs had to be amputated below the knee. He got himself on crutches and prosthetics and within a year danced in front of a judge to prove that he was battle ready. He then went on to fly 86 combat missions and took out 11 enemy warplanes.


42Joseph Medicine Crow

Joseph Medicine Crow became the last Plains Indian war chief ever after completing all four required tasks while fighting in Europe during World War II. The tasks included touching an enemy soldier, stealing his weapon, leading a successful war party, and stealing an enemy's horse.


43Tommy Prince

Tommy Prince was a Native American who served during World War 2. He was so quiet because of his pair of moccasins that sometimes instead of killing Germans, he would steal something like a pair of shoes right off their feet. Other times, he’d slit their throats and not make a sound. Germans would freak out when they would wake up and find someone dead in the midst of them. Germans thought he was a ghost or a devil.


44Lannes and Murat

In 1805, French had trouble capturing a bridge, which the Austrians had orders to blow up if they attacked. French marshals Lannes and Murat casually strolled up to the bridge guards laughing off any attempts to stop them telling them the fighting was over. When an Austrian sergeant tried to blow the bridge, Lannes threatened to arrest him for trying to destroy public property. He then sat on the barrel of cannon to stop them from firing it. When someone insisted that this was a trick, Murat demanded to know if the officers were going to let him talk to them like that, at which point the officers ordered that the man be imprisoned. They seized the bridge successfully.


45Special Operations Executive

During WW2 Winston Churchill formed Special Operations Executive. This secret military unit was stationed at Baker Street and it consisted of Christopher Lee, James Bond-creator, Ian Fleming as well as members who became his inspirations for M, Q, Miss Moneypenny, and Vesper Lynd. If there was a bridge that needed to be destroyed or an Axis officer who needed seducing, they were on it. They also prevented Nazis from building an atomic bomb.


46Thomas Alfred "Todger" Jones

Thomas Alfred “Todger” Jones served in the British army during WW2. After capturing a French village, while building trenches, his unit came under Sniper fire that killed a soldier. Enraged by this, he left his trench and crossed no man’s land without cover fire. Although one bullet went through his helmet and another through his coat, he returned the sniper's fire and killed him. He then saw two Germans firing on him while simultaneously displaying a white flag. Jones shot them both. He reached enemy trench and singlehandedly disarmed 102 Germans.


47Eduardo C. Gomez

During the Korean War, American soldier Eduardo C. Gomez took out an enemy tank by crawling across an open rice field, got up on top of the tank, then pried open the hatch and dropped a live grenade into the tank, killing the tank's crew. Even though he was wounded during his retreat from the tank, Gomez refused medical attention, instead manning his post and firing up on the enemy until his company formed a defensive perimeter.


48Benjamin F. Wilson

World War II veteran Lieutenant Benjamin E Wilson enlisted as a private during the Korean War and quickly rose through the ranks to become a sergeant. He was in charge of protecting “Hell Hill” and he was already wounded in his leg. When the Chinese attacked, he singlehandedly killed seven and wounded two enemy soldiers. He was wounded and was loaded on a stretcher, but when he became conscious, he rose from his-stretcher and in a rage charged the enemy ranks with his rifle and killed three more enemy soldiers. After his rifle was wrestled from his hands, he proceeded to kill four more men with his shovel. Next day after medics patched him up, he killed 33 more enemy soldiers in another one-man assault.


49George Albert Cairns

During WW2 Lieutenant George Albert Cairns, part of a British 'Special Force’ was tasked with constructing landing strips in a jungle in Burma. They came under heavy enemy fire when the construction began and were ordered to simply kill the enemy. Much of the fighting was hand-to-hand combat, British armed with bayonets and Japanese with katana. A Japanese soldier hacked off Cairns' left arm. In spite of this Cairns managed to kill that soldier, retrieved his katana with his right arm and stormed towards enemy swinging the katana. He killed and wounded several Japanese soldiers before collapsed and died of blood loss.


50John J. Kelly

U.S. Marine John Kelly was the last person to be awarded two Medals of Honor. During the battle of Blanc Mont Ridge in World War 1, he ran 100 yards in advance of the front line and attacked an enemy machine gun nest, killed the gunner with a grenade, shot another man with his pistol, and returned with 8 prisoners. He was just 19 years old during the battle.

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