Randomly bursting into flames? And from the inside out no less? Sounds like something straight out of a sci-fi movie, doesn’t it? Though the hundreds of unrelated accounts say otherwise. Sadly, most victims don’t make it out alive, and sometimes all that’s left of them are nothing but their legs and arms. But those who did are living proof that humans suddenly being engulfed in flames is not a hoax, and they have the scars to prove it.
1. Susan Motteshead
In the winter of 1980, a woman in Cheshire, England named Susan Motteshead was in her kitchen when she suddenly found herself engulfed in blue and yellow flames. While wearing fire-resistant pajamas no less! Luckily the fire was short-lived and Susan remained totally unscathed—not even her hair caught fire. The firefighters who responded to her call initially dismissed her claims of spontaneous combustion, only to realize that she was telling the truth when they tried to light up her fire-resistant pajamas by traditional means, but nothing worked.
2. Jeanna Winchester
Susan Motteshead wasn’t the only one who became the Human Torch in 1980. On October 9, what was supposed to be a pleasant ride in Jackson, Florida unexpectedly turned into something straight out of a movie. Without any warning, Jenna Winchester was suddenly overtaken by yellow flames that burned nearly 20 percent of her body. Her friend Leslie Scott, who was driving, saved her friend by beating out the fire, but crashed the car into a pole. As for Winchester, she had no recollection of what happened between riding in the car and waking up at the hospital.
3. Frank Baker
Frank Baker is a well-decorated Vietnam War veteran who, one day, randomly found himself under literal fire. In June 1995, while chilling on the couch with his fishing buddy Pete Willey, Baker’s torso and forearm randomly went up in flames from the inside out. Wasting no time, the pair managed to extinguish the fire, and rushed Baker to the ER to get his burns treated. The on-duty doctor was stunned, claiming that it was unlike anything he’s ever seen. And what’s more surprising is that Baker claimed that he felt zero pain during the whole ordeal.
4. Charles Williamson’s Wife
In January 1932, the Williamson family was subjected to a series of bizarre combustions, beginning with the matriarch, Mrs. Williamson who alerted her husband and daughter of her demise. The pair managed to tear off her cotton dress just in time, and although she was unhurt, the strange occurrences followed the family over the next four days. First was the bed, then some curtains and even a pair of Charles’ pants, all set ablaze with smokeless and odorless, blue, jetlike flames. The family temporarily evacuated on the fourth day for authorities and experts to investigate their home, but returned on the fifth when things returned to normal.
5. The Man That Gampe-Saevrei Saved
This one is most likely the first recorded case of spontaneous combustion, going all the way back to the early 16th century in Rauland, Norway. While leaving church, a parson by the name of Gampe-Saevrei stumbled across a blacked-out drunkard on the ground with blue flames shooting out of his mouth. Being the honest and god-fearing man that he is, the parson did the most reasonable thing he could think of: he put out the flames with his own body fluids. The drunkard, and the nearby congregation, took offense to Gampe-Saevrei’s act and beat him with a candlestick from his altar.
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