25 Rare Accomplishments In History That Only A Few People Have Done

Published 2 weeks ago

In a world where space exploration captures headlines and imaginations, it’s easy to forget the myriad of extraordinary achievements that have been accomplished right here on Earth. A recent inquiry on Reddit sparked a fascinating discussion about endeavors that have been undertaken by fewer individuals than the twelve who have walked on the moon.

The responses shed light on a diverse array of rare feats that highlight the ingenuity, courage, and determination of humanity. Let’s explore some of these lesser-known accomplishments shared by Redditors.

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Image source: charging_chinchilla, Tobias Aeppli

Alex Honnold is the only person who has ever free soloed (climbing without ropes or gear) El Capitan.

I doubt anyone else will ever even attempt to do this. Not only is it extremely difficult and dangerous, but there’s not a lot of glory in being the second person to do it.


Image source: two100meterman, nappy

Ran 100 meters in under 9.70 seconds (only 3 people have done this). Similarly run 100 meters in under 10.70 seconds for woman (only 7 woman have done this).

Shout out to:

– Usain Bolt
– Tyson Gay
– Yohan Blake
– Florence Griffith-Joyner
– Elaine Thompson-Herah
– Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce
– Carmelita Jeter
– Marion Jones
– Shericka Jackson
– Sha’Carri Richardson.


Image source: darkhelmet03, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

Survived rabies. (I think).

Edit: clarifying that I was not referring to myself but just answering the original question of something I thought that less than 12 people had achieved. I was pretty sure less than 12 people have survived contracting rabies because, barring the one exception I could think of, it has 100% fatality rate.


Fewer than 12 people have willingly slept with Harvey Weinstein.

Image source: MoronTheBall


Image source: Cock_-n-_BallTorture, Aedrian

Played Tetris for the NES all the way to the end screen.


Image source: Effective_One4642, Diva Plavalaguna

Read the terms and conditions before clicking ‘I agree’.


Image source: Dorkypotato, Mads Eneqvist

Fixed the leak at Chernobyl, saved the water table for Western Europe. Three guys wearing taped up garbage bags.


Image source: Fortuner128, (Mick Baker)rooster

Sir David Attenborough is the only person to win a BAFTA for a programme in black and white, colour, HD, 3D and 4K.


Image source: JJohnston015, Bruno Scramgnon

Orbited the moon alone.


Image source: ariella_cream, Thang Cao

Joan Murray, in 1990, jumped from an altitude of 4400 km, both of her parachutes did not open. She fell on a nest of fire ants. Murray broke many bones, knocked out almost all her teeth, but remained conscious due to the fact that she received hundreds of poisonous ant bites, this contributed to a large release of adrenaline, as a result of which doctors managed to resuscitate her, after several years of treatment and physical recovery, Joan returned to normal life and continued skydiving.


Image source: TurbulentAir, Discover History

Walked between the World Trade Center towers on a tightrope. Only one person ever did that.


Use their turn signal when pulling out of a BMW dealership.

Image source: svacheem45


Image source: SnooChipmunks126, wikipedia.org

Survived both the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.


Image source: midnightmare79, HefePine23

Violet Jessup. Survived all three White Star ocean liner sinkings. The Titanic, the Olympic, and the Britannic.


Image source: HelpfulDeparture, Pixabay

Only three people have died *in space* as a consequence of decompression.


Winning a horse race whilst dead
Just one person.

Image source: Plenkr


Image source: atot806, Black Mole Productions

More people have walked on the moon than winning on Takeshi’s Castle.


Image source: optifroculon, MLB

Hit two grand slams in one inning of an MLB game. Fernando Tatis is the only one.


Image source: Tough-Donut193, Pixabay

Survive a fall greater than 29000 feet without a parachute.

Sauce: Vesna Vulović (Serbian Cyrillic: Весна Вуловић, pronounced [ʋêsna ʋûːloʋitɕ]; 3 January 1950 – 23 December 2016) was a Serbian flight attendant who survived the highest fall without a parachute: 10.16 kilometres (6.31 miles) or 33,330 feet.


Image source: Ray661, Tokuo Nobuhiro

If I’m allowed to toot my own horn, I’m the only person to ever accurately forecast a tornado in Afghanistan. I had to fight tooth and nail to get that forecast approved, and by golly, it was by far the noodliest looking tornado ever. Someone down range thankfully got a picture for me.


Stood trial as an ex President of the US.

Image source: Weekly_Promise_1328


Folded a fitted sheet .

Image source: Horsesrgreat


Image source: doublestitch, Kindel Media

Perfect autobiographical memory is a medical condition known as *hyperthymesia*. A person who has hyperthymesia could tell you from the top of their head what day of the week any date they lived through was, and what they ate that day, and what they did on that particular day. If they saw the news that day they could tell you the day’s headlines. It’s an exhausting condition to have.

It’s extremely rare and diagnosis is usually disputed. Only 10 case studies of hyperthymesia have passed peer review and been recorded in the medical literature.



Since people have taken an interest and some are understandably skeptical, a few reference links.

* A man who’s been diagnosed with hyperthymesia, with MRI brain scan analysis to try to identify the causes of his unusual memory. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3432421

* A different medical case study of hyperthymesia. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13554790500473680

* Profile of actress Marilu Henner and her hyperthymesia. Henner costarred with Danny DeVito, Andy Kaufman, and Tony Danza on the TV show *Taxi*. https://www.brainandlife.org/articles/actress-marilu-henner-has-a-highly-superior-autobiographical-memory-a/

* In book form, *The Woman Who Can’t Forget: The Extraordinary Story of Living with the Most Remarkable Memory Known to Science–A Memoir* by Jill Price.


Image source: rap7or, wikipedia.org

Perished in a carbon fiber submarine with a video game controller as the method of controlling the submarine.


Image source: themightyfoxtwo, Les Chatfield

Been hit by a meteorite. Just one – Ann Hodges.

Saumya Ratan

Saumya is an explorer of all things beautiful, quirky, and heartwarming. With her knack for art, design, photography, fun trivia, and internet humor, she takes you on a journey through the lighter side of pop culture.

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few people did, rare achievements, rare events, rare people, rare things
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