He died at 103: all those times when Kirk Douglas escaped death

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LUCKY – Comedian Kirk Douglas died on Wednesday February 5 at the age of 103. Through his roles, he established himself as a living legend, which his personal history also fueled.

His life will have been worthy of a Hollywood film. Sacred monster of the 7th art, Kirk Douglas died Wednesday February 5 at the age of 103 years, announced his son Michael during the night. “It is with great sadness that my brothers and I announce that Kirk Douglas left us today at the age of 103 years. For the world, he was a legend, an actor in the golden age cinema (…) but for me and my brothers, Joel and Peter, he was just a father, “writes the famous interpreter of Gordon Gekko on Wall Street.

The private jet that should not be taken

If Kirk Douglas had a “good life”, as the husband of Catherine Zeta-Jones wrote, he will above all have had a guardian angel who allowed him to escape death several times. In 1958, when he had to take Michael Tood’s private plane to return to New York, his wife Anne Buydens begged him not to get on the plane because she had a bad feeling. Kirk Douglas accepts to please him. A good intuition, since a few hours later, the plane of the American producer, husband of Elizabeth Taylor, crashes near Grants (New Mexico) causing four victims: Michael Todd, the screenwriter Art Cohn and the two pilots.

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Miracle survival from a helicopter crash

On December 15, 1991, Kirk Douglas again escaped death in a helicopter crash in California. The 75-year-old actor miraculously survived the accident which left two victims and four injured, including the actor. He will get out, not unharmed, with burns and a broken back. And this accident will haunt him for the rest of his life. “I did not yet know that from that day on, I was never going to stop asking myself: ‘Why are they dead? Why am I alive?'”, He confessed in his memories (“The son of the ragpicker. Memoirs of Kirk Douglas “, published in 2001). This episode will also cause him to return to the Jewish faith.

A stroke at 80 …

Five years later, when he was 80 years old, Kirk Douglas suffered a stroke which paralyzed half of his face and made him unable to speak. “From one day to the next, I found myself unable to express myself, to communicate. I became enraged all the more since in my head, everything worked wonderfully well, as the thoughts boiled, but he was, alas! impossible to get them out of my mouth. (…) Thanks to a hard work of rehabilitation and a will of steel, I was able to recover, in part, the use of speech “, he confided to the Belgian newspaper The last hour.

And a last big alert at the age of 85

Despite a heart attack in 2001, he had found his way to the movie sets for “Une si belle famille” where he plays alongside his son Michael, his grandson Cameron and his ex-wife Diana Dill (Michael’s mother Douglas). A real force of nature.

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