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7 (un)Luckiest People in the World
Published on 11/19/2007
Frane Selak (born 1929) is a Croatian music teacher famous for his numerous escapes from fatal accidents:
Escaped from a derailed train, a door-less plane, a bus crash, a car into flames, another 2 car accidents... but then won $1,000,000 dollars on the lottery!
In January, 1962, Selak was traveling via train from Sarajevo to Dubrovnik. However, the train had suddenly derailed and plunged into an icy river, killing 17 passengers. Selak managed to escape, and only suffered a broken arm and minor scrapes and bruises.
The following year, while traveling from Zagreb to Rijeka when the door blew away from the cockpit, forcing him out of the plane. Although 19 others were killed, he suffered only minor injuries and had miraculously landed in a haystack.
In 1966, he was riding on a bus that crashed and plunged into a river. Four others were killed, but Selak managed to escape unharmed.
In 1970, he managed to escape before a faulty fuel pump engulfed his car into flames.
In 1973, another of Selak's cars caught fire, forcing fire through the air vents. He suffered no injuries save the loss of most of his hair.
In 1995, he was hit by a city bus, but once again suffered minor injuries.
In 1996 he escaped when he drove off a cliff to escape an oncoming truck. He managed to land in a tree, and watched as his car exploded 300 feet below him.
In 2003 he won $1,000,000 dollars in the Croatian lottery, and had stated that "I know God was watching me over all these years." He has reputedly refused to fly to Australia to air on a Doritos commercial, saying he "didn't want to test his luck."
He has said that he can either be looked as "the world's unluckiest man, or the world's luckiest man," and prefers the latter.
John Lyne could well be Britain's unluckiest man. 'Calamity John' has suffered 16 major accidents in his life, including lightning strikes, a rock-fall in a mine and three car crashes. 'I don't think there is any reason or explanation. Things could have been much worse and I could have died but it doesn't worry me too much.'
Suffered 16 major accidents in his life. As a teen, he felt from a tree; on his way back from hospital, his bus crashed.
Mr Lyne's mishaps cover a lifetime and he has even been known to suffer two accidents at once. As a child, he fell off a horse and cart – only to be run over by a delivery van. When he was a teenager, he broke his arm falling from a tree. On his way back from hospital, his bus crashed, breaking the same arm in another place. The date, of course, was Friday the 13th.
William "Bud" Post
William "Bud" Post won $16.2 million in the Pennsylvania lottery in 1988 but now lives on his Social Security. "I wish it never happened. It was totally a nightmare," says Post.
won the lottery, but got sued by everyone and finally went broke and died
A former girlfriend successfully sued him for a share of his winnings. It wasn't his only lawsuit. A brother was arrested for hiring a hit man to kill him, hoping to inherit a share of the winnings. Other siblings pestered him until he agreed to invest in a car business and a restaurant in Sarasota, Fla., - two ventures that brought no money back and further strained his relationship with his siblings. Post even spent time in jail for firing a gun over the head of a bill collector. Within a year, he was $1 million in debt.
Post admitted he was both careless and foolish, trying to please his family. He eventually declared bankruptcy. Now he lives quietly on $450 a month and food stamps. "I'm tired, I'm over 65 years old, and I just had a serious operation for a heart aneurysm. Lotteries don't mean (anything) to me," said Post. He died on Jan 15 of respiratory failure.
A British officer, Major Summerford, while fighting in the fields of Flanders in February 1918 was knocked off his horse by a flash of lightning and paralyzed from the waist down. Summerford retired and moved to Vancouver. One day in 1924, as he fished alongside a river, lightning hit the tree he was sitting under and paralyzed his right side. Two years later Summerford was sufficiently recovered that he was able to take walks in a local park. He was walking there one summer day in 1930 when a lightning bolt smashed into him, permanently paralyzing him. He died two years later. But lightning sought him out one last time. Four years later, during a storm, lightning struck a cemetery and destroyed a tombstone. The deceased buried here? Major Summerford.
Struck by lightning... 4 times!
Henry Ziegland thought he had dodged fate. In 1883, he broke off a relationship with his girlfriend who, out of distress, committed suicide. The girl's brother was so enraged that he hunted down Ziegland and shot him. The brother, believing he had killed Ziegland, then turned his gun on himself and took his own life. But Ziegland had not been killed. The bullet, in fact, had only grazed his face and then lodged in a tree. Ziegland surely thought himself a lucky man. Some years later, however, Ziegland decided to cut down the large tree, which still had the bullet in it. The task seemed so formidable that he decided to blow it up with a few sticks of dynamite. The explosion propelled the bullet into Ziegland's head, killing him.
Killed by a very persistent bullet
Ann Elizabeth Hodges (1923 - 1972) of Sylacauga, Alabama is the only person of record to have been hit by a meteorite. On November 30, 1954, she was napping on her living room couch when a grapefruit-sized meteoroid crashed through the roof of her house. It bounced off her large wooden console radio, destroying it, and struck her on the arm and hip. She was badly bruised but able to walk.
The only person (on record) to have been hit by a Meteorite
As it streaked through the atmosphere, the meteor made a fireball visible from three states, even though it fell early in the afternoon. As the first documented case of an extraterrestrial object hitting a person, the event received worldwide publicity. The United States Air Force sent a helicopter to take the meteorite. Hodges' husband, Eugene, hired a lawyer to get it back. The Hodgeses' landlord also claimed it, wanting to sell it to cover the damage to the house. There were offers of up to 5,000 U.S. dollars for the meteorite. By the time the meteorite was returned to the Hodgeses, over a year later, public attention had diminished and they were unable to find a buyer willing to pay much money.
Ms. Hodges was uncomfortable with the public attention and the stress of the dispute over ownership of the meteorite. Against her husband's wishes, she donated it to the Alabama Museum of Natural History. It is an ordinary chondrite stone (H4), and weighs about 8.5 pounds (4 kg). It is on display at the University of Alabama.
"Winning the lottery isn't always what it's cracked up to be," says Evelyn Adams, who won the New Jersey lottery not just once, but twice (1985, 1986), to the tune of $5.4 million. Today the money is all gone and Adams lives in a trailer. "I won the American dream but I lost it, too. It was a very hard fall. It's called rock bottom," says Adams.
Won the lottery twice, now lives on a trailer
"Everybody wanted my money. Everybody had their hand out. I never learned one simple word in the English language - 'No.' I wish I had the chance to do it all over again. I'd be much smarter about it now," says Adams, who also lost money at the slot machines in Atlantic City. "I was a big-time gambler," admits Adams. "I didn't drop a million dollars, but it was a lot of money. I made mistakes, some I regret, some I don't. I'm human. I can't go back now so I just go forward, one step at a time."