Best Facts of the Week - Page 8

Astronauts leave little memorabilia of fallen comrades on the moon during their trips up there! This is touching

Talk about staking your territory. Yuri Gagarin, a Soviet pilot and cosmonaut in the mid 1900s, famous for being the first man to enter space and complete an orbit around the earth, left yet another legacy when a satchel of hismedals of and those fellow astronaut Vladimir Komarov's was left on the surface of the moon by the astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin.

Later, a small 8 and a half centimeter aluminum figure dubbed a "Fallen Astronaut" and a plaque were also left on the moon commemorating not only Gagarin, but also 14 others who had died in space.

While Gagarin did not suffer the fate of those who perished in the line of duty, he still passed away furthering the mission of space exploration during a training exercise in a Mig-5 practice jet, along with flight instructor Vladimir Seryogin. There were many theories and conspiracies as to the causes of Yuri Gagarin's death, but it is a general consensus that his crash was caused by a sudden and unrecoverable spin or dive brought on by either another airborne object or by the condition of the plain.

Despite the early end to his accomplished life, Gagarin lives on through the meaningful tributes left for him and other astronauts in the ultimate match of king of the hill on the moon.


The Nazis had a hidden base in North America that wasn't discovered until 1977!

In October of 1943 a German U-Boat arrived in Martin Bay, Labrador. Within 24 hours a weather station was set up a quarter mile inland. The station was given the codename “Kurt,” presumably after the meteorologist who manned the station, Dr. Kurt Sommermeyer.

The station only operated for about two weeks according to German records, and wasn’t discovered until 1977 by a team of archeologists. This was probably because of how far north Martin Bay is, making it quite isolated.

Setting up the station must have been a huge and tiring task as the equipment was extremely heavy. There were ten canisters that weighed around 220 lb. each, as well as other equipment for communications and other miscellaneous things.

All of this had to be unloaded from a submarine, taken to land in rubber dinghies and then carried a quarter mile inland over unfamiliar land... in the dark. There just isn’t much sunlight when you’re that far north in October. All the effort doesn’t really seem worth it seeing as how the station only operated for two weeks.


Verkhoyansk, Russia, has an average temperature of -50 degrees! How do they survive?

Verkhoyansk is a small town in Russia with a population of 1,311 people. The town's claim to fame is having exceptionally low climate temperatures during the winter. The average temperature during December, January, and February is a freezing -50 degrees Fahrenheit, and it's one of the only places in the world that has recorded temperatures of BELOW -76 degrees Fahrenheit for EVERY DAY in January! During these months, the sun rises at 2p.m. And sets at 3p.m.!

Not only is the town unlucky with its weather, but also with the local wildlife. In January 2012, a pack of 400 wolves attacked the town, killing 313 horses and over 16,000 reindeer. Locals had to patrol the area on snowmobiles until government officials could intervene!


Some awesome lists!

Comedian Rob Riggle was a long-time member of the Marines and even received a Combat Action Ribbon! How did he switch to show biz?

Most of us know Rob Riggle either from his various television and movie roles or as a standup comic, but he was also a member of the United States Marine Corps Reserves for 23 years! He served in Liberia, Kosovo and Afghanistan before becoming a public affairs officer.

In 2006, while still a member of the USMC Reserves, Riggle was hired to 'The Daily Show' as a news correspondent and was also used as their Senior Military Analyst. In 2007, he fulfilled a dream of his to bring part of America to the troops overseas when he was sent on assignment to Iraq as a correspondent by 'The Daily Show.' He left the show on good terms in 2008 to "go fight crime," and has been back a few times since then.

Riggle earned the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in 2009. He is also a recipient of the Combat Action Ribbon for his service overseas. He acted and performed as a comedian, all while training fellow Marines in how to respond to media requests; a pretty impressive feat. Riggle publicly announced his retirement from the military via Facebook on January 1st, 2013.


The British figured out Germany's new radar system in WWII from its name, saving 100's of lives! How did they do it?

Just when the Nazis thought they could get the upper hand on the advancing British with a new bomber navigation system, some British physicist had to go and muck it all up by simply guessing how it worked and countering it before the first rocket flew! Way to rain on Hitler's parade!

The "Y-gadget," also known as "Wotan," was a radio navigation system used to aid bomber navigation by the German Luftwaffe forces in World War II. The British were winning in the Battle of the Beams and began intercepting transmissions regarding this "Wotan" system. R.V. Jones wasn't new to German code words and knew they were used literally more often than not. Turns out Wotan is the German name of the one-eyed Norse god Odin.

Using this knowledge, Jones determined this new system must use a single beam that was based on a distance-measurement system. The guess was right, and the British were able to counter it the moment it went into effect. The beam operated on the same frequency as the BBC's Alexandra Palace television station, which was used to send false signals to the bomber, confusing them and making the bombs completely inaccurate. The system was ditched after a few failed raids.



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