A life well lived.

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A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:58 pm

Who has the best and most varied life story?

I commend James Robertson Justice to the house.

Scotsman, journalist, salesman, teacher, lumberjack, goldminer, deckhand, hockey goaltender, rugby player, Saarland policeman, racing driver, International Brigader, naval officer, actor, polyglot and rector of Edinburgh University.

I accept that some of the earlier events are only vouched for by him, and he was a known raconteur, but by any standards that is a life well lived.

Can anyone beat that?

Edit to fix link and add "polyglot".
Last edited by Heid the Ba on Wed Apr 30, 2014 9:40 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby tubeswell » Wed Apr 30, 2014 9:33 am

Pah! he wasn't a musician
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Wed Apr 30, 2014 10:05 am

He sometimes claimed he could play the bagpipes. Even if true I don't know if that qualifies him as a musician to some.

Edit: typos.
Last edited by Heid the Ba on Wed Apr 30, 2014 10:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Lianachan » Wed Apr 30, 2014 10:23 am

I think he's even got the great Brian Blessed (undertaker, plasterer, RAF parachutist, boxer, mountaineer, oldest man to walk to the North Magnetic Pole, jungle explorer, plane crash survivor, Official Shoutsperson for the University of York's Douglas Adams Society and football pundit) beaten. Although at neither shouting nor boxing, I suspect.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Мастер » Wed Apr 30, 2014 3:36 pm

Lianachan wrote:I think he's even got the great Brian Blessed (undertaker, plasterer, RAF parachutist, boxer, mountaineer, oldest man to walk to the North Magnetic Pole, jungle explorer, plane crash survivor, Official Shoutsperson for the University of York's Douglas Adams Society and football pundit) beaten. Although at neither shouting nor boxing, I suspect.


:shock:

I already knew Brian Blessed was amazing. I just didn't know how amazing.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Fri Jun 06, 2014 10:42 am

While looking for someone else I was reminded of Field Marshall Ironside, born in Edinburgh, played rugby for Scotland, fought the Boers, spied in German SW Africa and the Middle East, fought Bolsheviks in Northern Russia, fought Pashtun on the NW Frontier, fought Germans in two wars, survived a number of wounds and a plane crash, was Governor of (at different times) Gibraltar and the Tower of London, spoke at least twelve languages and still found time to keep a diary.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Mon Jul 21, 2014 12:22 pm

This is a woman you didn't want to get on an ocean liner with. Violet Jessop who survived the sinkings of both the Titanic and its sister ship the Britannic and was on the third sister the Oceanic when it collided with another ship.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Lianachan » Fri Aug 01, 2014 10:50 pm

I remember seeing a documentary which discussed her.

I've just found out about Sir Adrian Paul Ghislain Carton de Wiart VC, KBE, CB, CMG, DSO. You only have to read the first paragraph of that page, really.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby MM_Dandy » Sun Aug 03, 2014 9:35 pm

Lianachan wrote:I remember seeing a documentary which discussed her.

I've just found out about Sir Adrian Paul Ghislain Carton de Wiart VC, KBE, CB, CMG, DSO. You only have to read the first paragraph of that page, really.


Not to diminish his fortitude, but is getting shot in the ear a thing? I mean, above and beyond getting shot (separately, I assume) in the head and face as well?
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Mon Aug 04, 2014 12:11 pm

I assume they are counting all the various wounds separately. He certainly was a bullet magnet and was sent to most of the dodgy places to go.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Tue Oct 14, 2014 1:53 pm

Ernst Gadermann a medical doctor who flew combat missions as rear gunner in a Stuka* and post war was a noted cardiologist who helped develop ECGs.

*At the time he flew they were laughably obsolete and his pilot was noted lunatic Hans-Ulrich Rudel.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Thu Nov 06, 2014 4:39 pm

Another doctor Archie McIndoe pioneering plastic surgeon for the victims of serious burns. A reminder that some plastic surgeons do very good work indeed. He didn't have much variety in his exploits but his achievements in one field were outstanding.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Arneb » Thu Nov 06, 2014 6:48 pm

I assume that part of this game is choosing people who aren't too prominent, but as we are into doctoers already, I would like to present to you my wonderful colleague, Bernard Lown, M. D., scientist, inventor, clinician, and peace lobbyist. In his latter role, as co-chairman of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, he accepted the Nobel Peace prize for 1985, together with his Soviet co-chariman and on behalf of the organisation he founded.

He is an exemplary man, and to anyone who wants to know what makes me, and a lot of my colleagues, tick (though of course, with vastly less success) I recommend his splendid "The Lost Art of Healing", which is at the same time an autobiography and a manifest.

I hope it's no problem that he is still very much alive (b. 1921). You know, he won't spoil it anymore now.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Thu Nov 06, 2014 8:26 pm

All contributions are welcome.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Tue Dec 02, 2014 2:21 pm

This is more of a family award, I came across James Abbott in a book about one of Britain's several excursions into Afghanistan. He (like three of his four brothers) was a general in the British or Indian Armies, fought on the North West Frontier and founded what turned into the Pakistani Army's major training base (and occasional home to skulking Saudis) Abbottabad. His fourth brother went into the civil service and was consul-general in various outposts.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby tubeswell » Tue Dec 23, 2014 5:24 am

Closer to home (for me anyway) Bernard Freyberg
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Tue Dec 23, 2014 9:17 am

He was some lad was Freyberg, I thought he got his VC for swimming ashore at Gallipoli but apparently not.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Lianachan » Tue Dec 30, 2014 10:41 pm

Bit of a sausage fest in this thread, so in the spirit of which she would most likely have approved, I give you the quite remarkable Camille du Gast
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Wed Dec 31, 2014 8:42 am

Excellent choice sir, though I think the section entitled "motor boating" is slightly misleading for one with such varied interests.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Lianachan » Tue Jan 06, 2015 10:30 am

Lianachan wrote:I remember seeing a documentary which discussed her.

I've just found out about Sir Adrian Paul Ghislain Carton de Wiart VC, KBE, CB, CMG, DSO. You only have to read the first paragraph of that page, really.


The BBC have an article about him today, although it is of course spun to promote current military endeavours.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Tue Jan 06, 2015 11:57 am

Of course it is, because otherwise we might have to go back to Afghanistan for an eighth time. Or something.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Lianachan » Tue Jan 06, 2015 1:18 pm

It must actually be about 8 times, I reckon - the Anglo-Afghan wars account for (I think) 4 on their own, and the last of those was a good while ago (hot on the heels of WW1).
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Мастер » Mon Jan 26, 2015 1:01 pm

Lianachan wrote:I think he's even got the great Brian Blessed (undertaker, plasterer, RAF parachutist, boxer, mountaineer, oldest man to walk to the North Magnetic Pole, jungle explorer, plane crash survivor, Official Shoutsperson for the University of York's Douglas Adams Society and football pundit) beaten. Although at neither shouting nor boxing, I suspect.


Watching BB on The Kumars at No 42 right now. He was describing how he punched a polar bear in the face.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Lianachan » Mon Jan 26, 2015 1:11 pm

Brian Blessed is pretty remarkable. As well as punching a polar bear in the face (from memory, on the nose to scare it away so somebody else wouldn't shoot it) he's also boxed with the Dalai Lama Llama. Presumably, the latter was in less danger of being shot at the time.
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Re: A life well lived.

Postby Heid the Ba » Mon Jan 26, 2015 1:57 pm

The Dalai Lama goes into a pizza place and says : "Make me one with everything . . ."
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