History’s 50 Most Awesome Badasses You Should Know About – Part 4

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11 Sophie Tucker

Sophie Tucker

In 2008, a dog named Sophie Tucker survived 4 months lost at sea off the coast of Australia. She fell overboard while sailing in bad weather with her owners. She then swam 5 nautical miles in stormy, shark-infested water to an island where she survived for 16 weeks by hunting wild goats.

12 Jan de Doot

Jan de Doot

In 1651, a Dutchman named Jan de Doot removed his own bladder stone with a kitchen knife. He pulled it out through an incision he made in his perineum. It was the size of an egg and weighed a quarter pound. He lived for years after and had the stone plated in gold.

13 Boudica


Boudica was a Celtic queen who in 60 A.D. led an uprising against the Romans, razing three cities and killing 80,000 Romans. This was an act of revenge for Rome annexing her kingdom after her husband died, flogging her publicly and ordering her daughters raped. Rome needed more than three legions to subdue her.

14 Lisa Potts

Lisa Potts

In July 1996 , a British nursery teacher named Lisa Potts saved a classroom of children from an attacker with a machete. She was awarded with the George Medal, the second-highest honor that a civilian can receive, the following year.

15 Yitzhak Ganon

Yitzhak Ganon

Yitzhak Ganon endured Mengele removing a kidney without anesthesia and survived Auschwitz because he was the 201st person in line for a 200-person gas chamber.

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16 Erwin Rommel

Erwin Rommel

During WW2, German field marshal Erwin Rommel would often personally pilot a reconnaissance aircraft over the battle to view the situation. Although Rommel did not have a pilot’s license, his skill with machinery made him a competent pilot, and none of the Luftwaffe officers had the nerve to stop him.

17 Albert Battel

Albert Battel

Albert Battel, a German officer serving in the Wehrmacht during WWII, commanded his whole unit to protect Jews and threatened the SS to kill them if they crossed a bridge into a Jewish ghetto to round them up.

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18 Dave Hartsock

Dave Hartsock

In 2009, a skydiving instructor named Dave Hartsock took a 54-old-woman on a tandem skydive. After the main chute failed and the second got tangled he told the woman to lift her feet. He then saved her life, by rotating their position, placing his body under hers to act as a cushion on impact. Both survived the accident, however, Hartsock is now paralysed from the neck down.

19 Tyler Doohan

Tyler Doohan

In 2014, an 8-year-old boy named Tyler Doohan saved 6 members of his family from his burning house before finally succumbing to the fire himself while trying to save the last victim, his disabled grandfather.

20 Maximilian Kolbe

Maximilian Kolbe

Maximilian Kolbe, a priest in Auschwitz volunteered to die in the place of a stranger who cried out “My wife! My children!” In the underground bunker, he kept all the others calm who were sentenced to be starved to death. He was the last one to die when he was executed by carbolic acid injection.

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