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A few of the most badass stories in the history of the world (10 Photos)
In August of 1943, John F. Kennedy was the naval officer in command of a ship. The boat was ripped in two by the Japanese destroyer Amagiri, and Kennedy and his crew were thrown into the water and surrounded by fire. Despite chronic back pain and exhaustion, Kennedy swam 4 hours to safety while towing an injured crew member by his life jacket strap with his teeth.
Zhuge Liang was a famous strategist in Ancient China. According to folklore, he was once cornered by an enemy in a small town with no defending forces. His move was to open the gates and have the townspeople act totally normal while Zhuge Liang sat on the wall playing the flute. The enemy assumed it was a trap, and retreated.
Agustina of Aragón showed up at a battle in 1808 during the Spanish War of Independence to bring apples to the gunners. She ended up becoming a hero when she ran the opposite direction while the Spaniards were retreating and ditched her apples for cannons. She shot point blank range at the French and took out an entire wave of enemies.
The Spaniards were so inspired and shamed that they turned back around to help her out. After a short while the French realized they were no match and gave up.
In 333 BC 23-year-old Alexander the Great had invaded Asia and arrived at the town of Gordium. He was undefeated, but also in need of an omen to prove to his troops- and everyone else- that he was capable of conquering the known world.
Enter the Gordian Knot, a massively complex ball of string attached to an ox cart. What was so special about this knot was that an oracle said whoever unraveled it would rule all of Asia. Alexander climbed the hill it was on and approached a curious crowd of onlookers. He stepped back and called out “What does it matter how I loose it?” Suddenly he drew his sword and in one strong stroke he cut the thing in half, severing the knot.
King Henry IV of England had to fight for his throne after winning it from his cousin Richard II, and his son Prince Henry was right there with him. In the Battle of Shrewsbury in 1403, Prince Henry was commanding the left wing of the army when he was shot in the face with an arrow. It lodged in his cheekbone, but he kept fighting without even pulling it out. The most badass part about it? He was only about 15 at the time.
When Julius Caesar was kidnapped by Cilician pirates, they demanded a ransom of 20 talents. Caesar rejected this ransom, stating that the it was too low for someone like himself. So he raised it to 50, his men paid the ransom, and Caesar went home. He then raised a fleet and proceeded to capture the kidnappers, crucify them, and then take back his 50 talents.
In 1066 the Vikings got ambushed at a place called Stamford Bridge. They didn’t even have a chance to put their armor on before a huge army of Saxons came to kick some ass.
The only Viking soldier who was ready was an axeman, who ended up cutting down 40 Englishmen and was only defeated when an English soldier came under the bridge and mortally wounded him with his spear. They still lost the battle, but this giant act of bravery delayed the English army and allowed the Norseman to form a shieldwall, giving themselves a fighting chance.
Shavarsh Karapetyan is a 17-time World Champion Soviet Armenian finswimmer, which is an underwater sport that involves snorkeling, tail fins, and very intense swimming. One day he was running a casual twelve miles when he heard a crash. He then watched a trolleybus with 92 passengers sink 80 feet to the bottom of a reservoir. He swam to the bus in zero visibility, broke the back window with his legs, and rescued 20 passengers all on his own.
From 1135-1153, England had a civil war known as The Anarchy. John Marshal, father of famous knight William Marshal, chose to support the Empress Matilda and her son, who would later become King Henry II. When King Stephen attacked and besieged John at Newbury Castle, Stephen captured young William and held him hostage. He threatened to catapult the young boy over the walls unless John surrendered, to which John replied “I still have the hammer and anvil to forge more sons.” Realizing his bluff had been called, the King backed down.
On January 29th, 1945, US Army First Sergeant Leonard A. Funk was commanding a small troop when he was faced with a German officer who pressed a machine gun to his stomach. As he stood there, Funk started laughing in the face of the officer holding the gun.His outburst was so strange that many of the Germans began to chuckle, which made Funk laugh even harder.
Before the German knew what was going on, Funk quickly unslung his gun and opened fire, causing the Nazis to surrender. After laughing some more, Funk remarked through his giggles that the situation was “the stupidest fucking thing [he’d] ever seen!” He was awarded the Medal of Honor.