20 Survivors Of Plane Crashes, Shipwrecks, And Other Gruesome Disasters Tell Their Story

These stories from Ask Reddit will make you thankful for every single breath.
A shipwreck
Unsplash / Casey Horner

1. I was caught in a wild fire that turned the whole town to ashes

“Got caught in a wildfire in Chile early this year.

Pretty much half the country was burning, we were taking a few days with my family but the wildfires in the nearby towns rained ashes all over the region, you could barely breathe.

We stayed nontheless, and went to a nearby town, “Santa Olga”, because we heard in the news that the fires were too close to the town and threatened to destroy the entire town and we went there to help with supplies.

Then we decided to help with the wildfires uh, in a very primitive way, very few firefighters were around because the whole fucking country needed help and people were afraid of losing their houses, honestly looking at their faces I could not just go back home and that’s why we decided to help.

When we were trying to put off the fire, a random burst of fire went all around us and surrounded my family and like 10 more people inmediatly, it was unreal, didn’t know fire could spread that quickly.

We had no way out and the fires were slowly going towards us and we were trapped, we got really nervous and it was pretty scary since our proximity to the fire was soffocating us, it was pretty damn hot if you ask me.

I thought that was it, and I actually thought of suiciding somehow because I can’t even take it when I burn myself with a cigarette, being burned down was probably the most painful way to die, but I never had the courage to do anything but to stare at the fucking fires.

We could not run over it since the fire was super deep.

Suddenly we heard a few planes and they dropped a shit ton of water that gave us a miraculous path to get the fuck out of there, there was still a lot of fire around but it was thin enough for us to run over it.

Also, the water hit us hard, it was a fuckton of water, but hey they saved my life and many others.

We inmediatly got into our car and got the fuck out of there, we wanted nothing to do with it, as selfish as it sounds, we were shocked and said fuck helping we’re out, we’re totally done helping here.

That town, Santa Olga, was actually 100% consumed by the fires, an entire town turned into ashes.” — I_like_earthquakes

2. Our building swayed side to side during an earthquake

“I was on the top floor of a six-story building in Kathmandu when the almost 7 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal in 2015. I was with my girlfriend and I remember the whole building swaying side-to-side as if it was a reed in the wind. My girlfriend screamed and asked if we were being bombed but somehow I knew it was an earthquake and I told her so. I held her under a door frame, like we’d been taught and when the shaking stopped, we ran out like our lives depended on it.

We were lucky. Our building didn’t collapse but so many others did. Thousands of people died in that earthquake. I still have PTSD, whenever my building shakes because of a passing truck or a heavy vehicle, I think instinctively that it is another earthquake.” — xkathmandu

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Trace the scars life has left you. It will remind you that at one point, you fought for something. You believed.

“You are the only person who gets to decide if you are happy or not—do not put your happiness into the hands of other people. Do not make it contingent on their acceptance of you or their feelings for you. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if someone dislikes you or if someone doesn’t want to be with you. All that matters is that you are happy with the person you are becoming. All that matters is that you like yourself, that you are proud of what you are putting out into the world. You are in charge of your joy, of your worth. You get to be your own validation. Please don’t ever forget that.” — Bianca Sparacino

Excerpted from The Strength In Our Scars by Bianca Sparacino.

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