Three stories of survival

Mike Krumboltz
July 26, 2011

The world is a dangerous place. Three amazing stories of survival in the face of bears, snakes, and a rogue kangaroo are sweeping the Web. We're happy to report that all three incidents have relatively happy endings.

Teenagers escape bear attack
When 17-year-old Samuel Gottsegen traveled to Alaska to be part of an outdoor training program, he probably never dreamed that his survival training would be put to such a test. But that's exactly what happened.

While hiking with a small group about 120 miles north of Anchorage, Gottsegen came face-to-snout with a very angry bear. The group tried to run away, but the bear caught up to Gottsegen, bit into his head, and pierced his lung. In an interview with "Good Morning America," the teen explained that he and another student received the worst of the attack. He also mentioned that he had anti-bear spray, sort of like mace for bears, but there was no time to pull it out. The bear was just too fast. You can watch Gottsegen's interview in the video clip above.

Though the teens' injuries were severe, no one was killed. Again according to "Good Morning America," the bear eventually left the group of kids, who then signaled for help. They were rescued several hours later by helicopter. Gottsegen left with scary bite marks and a story we're sure he'll be telling his grandchildren.

Man survives three days in sewage pipe
As horrible as a bear attack must be, it may not outrank getting stuck in a tight space with a bunch of snakes on the terror-meter. Kevin Gonterman spent three days trapped in a sewage pipe that was slithering with snakes. Gonterman had been missing for several days when he was finally found at the bottom of a 30 foot manhole.

Rescuers retrieved Gonterman, who after several days of being bitten by snakes and without food and water, understandably was said to be delirious. There was no immediate word on how Gonterman fell into the hole. Houston papers reported that the 25-year-old was immediately taken to the hospital.

Kangaroo attacks 94-year-old woman
Phyllis Johnson was minding her own business, hanging up her laundry in her backyard in Queensland, Australia, when a rogue kangaroo attacked her. Johnson suffered some bruises and cuts and was taken to the hospital following her run-in with the angry marsupial.

Police responded to the call and subdued the kangaroo with pepper spray. After being sprayed the first time, the "Big Red" kangaroo hopped toward another officer, who sprayed it again. It is unusual, as MSNBC reports, for kangaroos to wander into urban areas. Fortunately, the police were prepared.