1Heroic Soldier's Redemption
Albert Severin Roche, a distinguished French soldier, was sentenced to death for sleeping on duty during World War 1. However, moments before his execution, a messenger arrived with the true story: Albert had crawled for 10 hours under fire to rescue his captain and collapsed from exhaustion.
2. When Ronald Reagan was shot in 1981, hospital staff cut away his clothing and tossed a laminated card found in his suit pocket into his shoe on the floor. Unbeknownst to them, that card contained a list of nuclear launch codes.
3. Even though we frequently receive warnings about mother bears and their cubs, lone male bears are responsible for nearly 90% of fatal bear attacks.
4. Ludwig van Beethoven had a strained relationship with his brother Johann and strongly opposed his marriage to a housekeeper. When Johann signed a letter to Ludwig as "From your brother Johann, landowner," Ludwig signed his reply as "From your brother Ludwig, brain owner."
5. The clicks produced by sperm whales are powerful enough to penetrate and vibrate a person's entire body, potentially causing death.
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6Hymie Weiss: A Fearless Gangster
Hymie Weiss, a Chicago gangster, had terminal cancer, which made him recklessly ignore his own safety. Leading a gang war against Al Capone, Weiss shot up Capone's car and hotel, earning the reputation of "the only man Al Capone feared." However, Weiss was ultimately assassinated on October 11, 1926.
7. Muhammad Ali's speaking rate slowed by 16 percent after his 1977 15-round fight against Ernie Shavers.
8. The Longyou Caves in China are a network of mysterious man-made caves over 2,000 years old. They were never documented in historical records and were only rediscovered by local farmers in 1992.
9. The movie "Scarface" (1983) not only failed to receive recognition at the Oscars but also received a Razzie nomination for Worst Director.
10. In 1993, a man named John Doyle survived a great white shark attack while surfing off the coast of West Africa. However, lions mauled him on his way to the hospital. Remarkably, he survived both attacks and made a full recovery.
11Conscious After Cardiac Arrest
In a 2014 study involving over 2,000 people who had experienced cardiac arrest, it was revealed that 40% of the survivors were aware that they were clinically dead and that their hearts were being restarted. Some remained conscious for up to 3 minutes after the attack.
12. When Christopher Columbus set sail for the New World, a reward was set for whoever first sighted land. Although one of his crewmen was the first to report, Columbus falsely claimed he'd spotted land the previous night, thereby securing the reward for himself.
13. In 2000, American treasure hunter Tommy Thompson successfully found millions of dollars' worth of gold coins from the SS Central America. He then went on the run, refusing to pay his debts, and now claims to have memory loss regarding the location of 500 hidden gold coins while serving time in jail (as of July 2023).
14. Alaska P. Davidson was the first female special agent that the Bureau of Investigation hired in 1922. However, she was forced to resign by Director J. Edgar Hoover in 1924. No female officers were rehired until 1972.
15. In an attempt to reach Saddam Hussein, who was hiding in bunkers too deep for conventional bombs, the US filled a 16-foot hardened steel artillery barrel with explosives, added fins, and airdropped it, creating the first "Bunker Buster." Iraq withdrew from Kuwait the next day.
16Debunking Lactic Acid Myth
The belief that lactic acid causes muscle soreness after a workout was debunked in the 1980s. Research suggests that the soreness is a result of physiological effects triggered by microscopic trauma sustained during intense exercise.
17. The impact of boxing gloves on injuries is a controversial issue. A report by the British Medical Association concluded that gloves do not reduce brain injuries and may even increase them.
18. During the shooting event of the 1965 World Pentathlon Championships, Herbert Polzhuber drank 10 glasses of beer and a bottle of cognac. When he stepped onto the shooting platform, he shot all his bullets into the ground and passed out. Shortly after this incident, alcohol was banned from shooting events.
19. After AC/DC vocalist Bon Scott died of alcohol poisoning, the band considered disbanding. However, at the request of Scott's parents, they hired Brian Johnson as their new frontman and went on to create "Back in Black," which became the second-best-selling album of all time.
20. By 1965, boxing legend Sugar Ray Robinson had gone broke, having spent all the $4 million he earned during his career. When presented with a huge trophy after his final fight, Robinson was so poor that there was not a single piece of furniture in his apartment strong enough to support it.
21U-505 Secret Capture
On June 4, 1944, Task Group 22.3 secretly captured the German submarine U-505 for the US Navy. Despite the crew's attempts to scuttle it, an 8-man boarding party rushed inside and kept the submarine afloat, towing it 3,150 km back to Bermuda. The capture of the ship was kept secret until after the war.
22. Jane Goodall met her first husband, Hugo van Lawick, when he came to photograph her for National Geographic in Gombe Stream National Park. They married in 1964 and had a son nicknamed Grub. However, when his funding dried up, he had to leave Gombe, and the couple eventually drifted apart.
23. It can take a master weaver up to 8 months to produce a Panama hat, which may sell for $200. Interestingly, the best hats can be sold outside of Ecuador for 50 times the amount the weaver is paid.
24. In 1902, a 9-year-old spectator named Stanton Walker at a baseball game in Morristown, Ohio, died after being struck by a foul ball. The tragic incident occurred while his companions were passing a knife to sharpen a score-keeping pencil. The knife lodged between his ribs, causing his death within minutes.
25. Alfred Hitchcock refused to meet Steven Spielberg, whom he admired. According to Bruce Dern, this was because Hitchcock had agreed to be the voice of the Jaws ride at Universal Studios, and looking at Spielberg made him feel "like a whore."