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15 Famous figures who took a bullet and lived to tell the tale (With Pictures)

8. Pope John Paul II

Here’s one sure fire way to earn a one way ticket to Hell. In 1981, Mehmet Ali Ağca stuck Pope John Paul II with four bullets as he rode through St. Peter’s Square in his Popemobile. Two of the bullets lodged into his lower intestine, the other two hitting his left index finger and right arm, as well as injuring two bystanders.

Ağca attempted to escape in the chaos, and even planned to set off a bomb to add even more confusion, but was apprehended by the Vatican security chief, a nun, and several spectators before he had the chance. An Italian court sentenced the would-be assassin with life in prison, however president Carlo Azeglio Ciampi would later pardon him after 19 years of his sentence upon the Pope’s request.

Mehmet was deported to his birthplace of Turkey, where he had escaped another life long prison sentence for the murder of left-wing journalist Abdi İpekçi, as well two bank raids that occurred in the 1970s. He was returned to jail, and The Turkish Supreme Court ruled that his time served in Italy would not be reduced from his sentence. It wasn’t until 2010, after nearly 29 years behind bars, that he was released.

After 6 hours on the operating table and four days in recovery, Pope John Paul II forgave his attacker, asking the people to pray for him. He even visited Ağca in prison two years after the attack to forgive him in person. Reportedly, Ağca even kissed the Pope’s ring at the end of their visit.

The two maintained a relationship, with Pope John Paul II meeting and keeping in touch with Mehmet’s family over the years, and the his attempted killer sending the Pope a letter during his illness in 2005 wishing him well. In December 2014, Mehmet returned to Rome and laid two dozen white roses at the pope’s tomb.


7. ODB

Ol’ Dirty B******, a founding member of the Wu-Tang Clan and one of the wildest rappers to ever pick up a mic. ODB’s crazed antics landed him in plenty of legal trouble, but he also found himself in a number of violent situations.

While there was only one instance where the Wu-Tang Clan rapper was proven to have committed an act of violence, he was commonly the victim of attack. In 1994, he was shot in the stomach after a street argument with another rapper in Brooklyn.

Four years later, two assailants forced their way into ODB’s girlfriend’s apartment where they stole money and jewelry from the rapper before leaving him with another bullet wound as a parting gift. The bullet went through his back and out his arm, leaving no severe damage. After hours of treatment he ignored the hospital’s request for overnight observation and walked out of the hospital on his own.

While neither of his run-ins with gunmen were severe, ODB’s luck would finally run out in 2004. Recording in fellow Wu member the RZA’s studio, ODB collapsed from what was later deemed an accidental overdose from a mixture of cocaine and prescription drug tramadol, just two days before his 36thbirthday.



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