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26th Jun 2021

Man didn’t know women existed for 41 years in extraordinary story

George McKay

41 years?!

While some may see this as a blessing, it’s undeniable that this is quite the remarkable story.

Ho Van Lang, aged 49, fled civilisation in the 70s during the Vietnam war with his brother and their father Ho Van Thanh

They fled after a US bomb killed Thanh’s wife and two of his children.

After leaving his village, Lang lived his life deep in the Vietnamese jungle by hunting for prey, and foraging local fruits and seeds. During his time in the jungle, he would eat all manner of creatures to survive, including monkey, snake, lizard or frog.

They spent 41 years in the wilderness, and only ever saw five people, running away from them on each occasion.

When asked whether he knew what a female was, Lang said he had never been taught by his father, but he’s since seen them in the village in which he now lives.

Alvaro Cerezo, who managed to track them down and reach them in 2015, told

They always escaped when they saw people from a distance.

More surprising still is that today, despite being able to distinguish between men and women, he still doesn’t know the essential difference between them.

I can confirm that Lang has never had the minimum sexual desire and his reproductive instinct has never shown its head in any of its many facets.

Lang’s brother says he is a ‘baby in a man’s body’, and that he doesn’t understand even the most basic social concepts.

He said:

Lang has spent his whole life in the jungle. If I asked Lang to beat someone, he would do it severely. He doesn’t know the difference between good and bad. Lang is just a child. He doesn’t know anything. Most people know what is good or bad in life, but my brother doesn’t.

Lang has also struggled in his reintroduction into ‘civilisation’, after his body was introduced to types of bacteria it had never encountered while living in the jungle.

However, he is adjusting to life and enjoys being friendly with animals and other people, compared to his more hostile experiences in the wilderness.