This Is The Only Person In History To Be Hit By A Meteorite!

This Is The Only Person In History To Be Hit By A Meteorite!

On November 30, 1954, in Sylacauga, Alabama, Ann Hodges made history in an unexpected and painful way. She became the only known person to be struck by a meteorite. Hodges, a 34-year-old woman, was taking a nap on her living room couch when a meteorite crashed through her home. Ann suffered a large bruise on her left side hip from the impact. The meteorite, that hit her was over 4.5 billion years old! 

Astronomer Michael Reynolds pointed out how rare such an event is. He said, “You have a better chance of getting hit by a tornado and a bolt of lightning and a hurricane all at the same time.” This unbelievable event led to legal battles over the ownership of the meteorite as well. 

The Day the Sky Fell!

On the afternoon of November 30, 1954, the meteorite entered the Earth’s atmosphere and lit up the sky across Alabama, Georgia, and Mississippi. Observers described seeing a “bright reddish light” and “a fireball, like a gigantic welding arc.” As it hurtled toward the ground, the meteorite split in two. One piece ended up hitting Ann Hodges, while the other landed a few miles away.

The meteorite was later named the Hodges Meteorite after the place where it fell. It was an 8.5-pound chunk of space rock over 4.5 billion years old.

At the moment of impact, Ann was resting at home with her mother. The meteorite first pierced the roof, struck a radio console, and then collided with Hodges. The house was filled with dust, leaving both Ann and her mom confused. The police and fire departments were called immediately. Soon, the Hodges’ home was surrounded by curious locals and media.

Only Person In History To Be Hit By A Meteorite
Image source: HubPages

Examination of the Meteorite

The Sylacauga meteorite, as it was officially known, is a type of chondrite, containing higher levels of iron and nickel compared to other meteorites. This ancient rock, dating back to the beginnings of the solar system, represents the primal material from which Earth formed. 

The Smithsonian’s Cari Corrigan, a research geologist, notes that “Ninety-nine percent of meteorites come from the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter,” highlighting the cosmic journey these celestial bodies have to go through before reaching Earth.

Only Person In History To Be Hit By A Meteorite
Image source: Business Insider

Battle To Own The Meteorite

The arrival of the meteorite sparked a legal dispute between Ann Hodges and her landlady, Birdie Guy, over its ownership. The situation was resolved with Hodges paying $500 to keep the meteorite. She tried to resell it but it didn’t work. Ann then used it as a doorstop before donating it to the Alabama Museum of Natural History. 

The public fascination with Hodges continued, impacting her life significantly. She appeared in news outlets and even on the cover of ‘Life magazine,’ but the attention worsened her health issues.

Only Person In History To Be Hit By A Meteorite
Image source: This is Alabama / UA News Center

Where Are They Now? Both The Meteorite and Ann

Sadly, Ann passed away at just 52 years old due to kidney failure. After her death in 1972, the meteorite was given to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History. Hodges’ unique meeting with the meteorite has been preserved in scientific records and popular culture.


Ann Hodges’ story uniquely intersects natural phenomena, human interest, and sheer randomness. It prompts us to consider our place in the universe and the unforeseeable nature of life. Meteorites, while scientifically fascinating, also bring tales of wonder and sometimes, unexpected distress. Hodges’ experience reminds us of the thin line between ordinary life and extraordinary events.

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