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The 10 Luckiest People Who Ever Lived

I count my blessings when I find a penny lying on the ground, but that's nothing compared to the incredible luck these 10 people had:

1. Bill Morgan

Few people manage to cheat death and Lady Luck during their lifetimes, but Morgan did both twice. This Australian man's car was hit by a truck and Morgan was crushed during the accident. He was declared legally dead for almost 15 minutes before doctors could revive him.

Morgan was left in a coma, and his chance to survive seemed so slim that his family actually pulled the plug on him, but he woke up 12 days later. To celebrate his good luck, Morgan bought a lottery ticket.

His scratch-off ticket won him $20,000, and the incredible story got him featured on a local news report. The reporter asked Morgan to reenact his big moment, so he bought a 2nd scratch-off ticket which won him $250,000. You can't make this stuff up!

2. Vesna Vulovic

Vulovic landed in the record books for a very unfortunate reason: she survived the highest fall ever recorded by a human being. Vulovic was just 22-year-old and working as a flight attendant when her plane was ripped apart, sending her falling 33,333 feet without a parachute.

The flight attendant was trapped inside the tail section of the aircraft as it dropped out of the sky, which is probably what saved her life. While she was paralyzed from the waist down, Vulovic lived to tell her amazing tale.

3. Teddy Roosevelt

Our 26th president survived a number of dangerous asthma attacks in his childhood, but his scariest brush with death of all was an assassination attempt while he was campaigning in 1912. Roosevelt was about to give a speech in Milwaukee when a man pulled a pistol on him.

Roosevelt's X-ray shows the bullet lodged against his right rib.

In a twist that would be unbelievable in a movie, the assassin's bullet passed through a 50 page speech in Roosevelt's pocket and his steel eyeglasses case, slowing the bullet down and saving his life. Roosevelt went on to give his entire 90 minute speech before going to the hospital.

4. Roy Sullivan

We'll let you decide if this is a case of very good luck or very bad luck: park ranger Roy Sullivan was struck by lighting 7 times in his life. The odds of being struck just once in your lifetime is 1 in 12,000, so Sullivan definitely hit the jackpot.

Lighting even struck Sullivan's wife, which didn't help the rumors that he was some kind of human lightning rod. Sullivan's co-workers would actually walk away from him during a storm, worried they would be caught in the crossfire.

Who could be luckier than Sullivan?

5. Joan Ginther

This Texas mathematician became a legend among lottery players for her incredible 4 jackpots wins. Between 1993 and 2010, Ginther pocketed as much as $20 million from her multiple scratch-off ticket prizes. But was it pure luck?

In fact, Ginther probably used a legal but ingenious system to win her jackpots, buying thousands of tickets for games with the best odds. But Ginther's 4 wins are still very impressive. And she may have been responsible for even more, because her close friend Anna Morales won 24 smaller prizes.

6. Tsutomu Yamaguchi

Another case of good luck or very bad luck depending on how you slice it, Yamaguchi is the only person recognized by the government of Japan for surviving both of the 2 nuclear attacks in history. Yamaguchi was in Hiroshima on business when America dropped an atomic bomb on the city.

After surviving the blast, he was taken to his family home in Nagasaki. He had just gone back to work when the second a-bomb dropped. Unsurprisingly, Yamaguchi spent the rest of his life speaking out against the use of nuclear weapons.

7. Adolphe Sax

Sax was the inventor of the saxophone (and the less popular saxhorn), but the musician and inventor is just as well-known for the laundry list of accidents he survived from a young age.

As a toddler Sax fell from three stories above the ground, landing head-first on a rock. He survived, and went on to drink a bowl of sulfuric acid, swallow a needle, get burned in a gunfire explosion and a cooking accident, nearly suffocated in his sleep because of varnish fumes, had cobblestones fall on his head and almost drowned while he was swimming.

All of those accidents happened before Sax turned 29. His mother famously predicted he was "a child condemned to misfortune," but later in life his luck improved and he survived until age 79.

8. Fidel Castro

The Cuban revolutionary leader was a prime target for political enemies, American businessmen, and the CIA, who came up with some pretty wacky plans to take him out over the years.

Attempted assassination methods involved poisoning Castro's food, poisoning his cigars, switching his cigars with exploding cigars, coating his scuba-diving gear with deadly germs, and hiring the dictator's own mistress to ambush him. The Cuban government claims Castro survived more than 630 assassination attempts during his lifetime. Castro died in 2016, aged 90.

9. Charles 14th John of Sweden

How did a nobody from France become the King of Sweden? By having very good luck and knowing the right people. While serving in the French military in the 1700s, Charles (born Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte) developed a close relationship with Napoleon.

Bernadotte was given promotion after promotion because of his hard work, the kindness he showed his soldiers, and his friendship with Emperor Napoleon. He eventually caught the eye of Sweden's King Charles 13th, who just so happened to be looking for an heir because he had no children. Bernadotte was picked to be next in line for the  Swedish throne, and spent the last 30 years of his life as a king.

10. Frane Selak

When Frane Selak was born the stars must have been aligned just right, because Selak survived 7 near-death scrapes through sheer luck.

First, Selak was on a train that crashed into a freezing river, but survived with just an injured arm and hypothermia. Next, his first plane ride ended in a crash, which he only survived by being thrown out the cockpit door onto a haystack (yes, really).

A bus he was riding slid into the river, he was hit by a bus, and he was involved in a pair of car accidents, both of which set his car on fire. Selak also shot himself in the groin while teaching his son about firearm safety.

In his final accident, Selak skidded off the road to avoid crashing his car into a truck. His car dropped 300 feet into a ravine, but Selak tumbled onto the side of the road through the vehicle's broken door. After all that, it's not surprising that Selak won $1.1 million in the Croation National Lottery just days after his 73rd birthday.

Selak spent his winnings on a small church to thank God for all his luck, which is probably a good idea.

Share this list and maybe Selak's good luck will rub off on you!

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