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by Billy Kirk July 10, 2017

Welcome to “Mystery Monday” here at Blenders!

Okay, that’s actually not a thing—we just made it up a sec ago. But this Monday is all about spooky stuff, as we examine 5 of the Most Mysterious People to Ever Live. From “The Man in the Iron Mask” to aviation passengers arguably from another universe, let’s have some fun.

1. Babushka Lady

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Pictured here, the Babushka Lady was seen photographing the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in 1963 at Dealey Plaza in Dallas, Texas. While visible in the famous Zapruder film, she’s never been positively identified and her film has never been recovered. While a woman, Beverly Oliver, came forward in 1970 as the Babushka Lady to researcher Gary Shaw at a Joshua, Texas church revival, she never proved her claims.


2. D.B. Cooper 

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The date was November 24, 1971, and a man under the assumed identity of Dan Cooper hijacked a Boeing 727 in the airspace over Seattle, Washington and Portland, Oregon, successfully extorting $200,000 as ransom (over $1.1 mil in today’s moolah). Dramatically, Cooper then parachuted from the plane at midnight to make his escape.

Due to a miscommunication, the media dubbed him “D.B. Cooper,” and the legend was born. While it’s doubtful ‘ole D.B. survived the jump, no one knows the ending to his story—and it stands as the only unsolved air heist in commercial aviation history. For its part, the FBI kept an active investigation open for 45 years.


3. The Man from Taured


Another aviation-based mystery for ya—but this one is way “Twilight Zone.”

In July 1954 in Tokyo’s Haneda Airport, a middle-aged Caucasian gentleman approached customs following arrival from Europe. He seemed normal—but things took a weird-ass turn when he was asked for his country of origin. He proudly proclaimed he was from Taured… you know, the little spot between Spain and France. However, Taured didn’t exist then and it sure as hell doesn’t exist now. Despite this fact, the gentleman had a Taured-issued passport that was stamped indicating his previous customs dealings in Japan and various other countries. When presented with a map, he swore that the country of Andorra was mislabeled and existed where Taured should.

The man’s protestations were dismissed—after all, the company he said he represented didn’t exist, nor did the bank listed on his checkbook—and in perhaps the wildest twist, he and all his documents vanished the next day. Poof. Gone.

We’re placing our bets on, “Dude was from a parallel universe,” but hey, what do we know.


4. The Man in the Iron Mask

Image Credit: TVLine

Nah, it’s not just a fictional movie with Leonardo DiCaprio. “The Man in the Iron Mask” was apparently a real dude, although it’s hard to say what facts are absolutely verified from the little we know about this uber-mysterious prisoner. Arriving to the Bastille “super prison” in 1698 under the pseudonym of “Eustache Dauger,” he did indeed wear a mask of some type—perhaps iron, perhaps not—and it’s been speculated he was a high-level political prisoner. Also listed as "Prisoner 64389000,” he was forbidden to show his face and spent between 20 to 30 years imprisoned already. In 1703, he passed away in the Bastille, and his identity remains a mystery to this day.

5. Perseus 

Image Credit: NPR

Back in the 1940s, the United States hadn’t yet gone nuclear on its enemies. But the atomic bomb was a fever dream the nation’s scientists were trying desperately to make a reality via the super-duper-top-secret Manhattan Project. However, little did America know that there was a spy in their midst.

Known only as “Perseus,” the soviet spy was covertly bunkered down within the Manhattan Project program from 1943 to 1946—the prime years of the operation. It’s still unknown who Perseus was (although some have speculated poorly)—and the United States didn’t even realize he existed until former KGB officials had a good laugh about it in 1991. Crazy.

Billy Kirk
Billy Kirk