At 11:13 a.m Eastern Standard Time (EST), or 19:13:00 Coordinated Universal Time (UTC), commander James A. Lovell, command module pilot John L. 'Jack' Swigert, and lunar module pilot Fred W. Haise were launched aboard their command module Odyssey from Launch Pad 39A at KSC.
Also, onboard was their lunar module, Aquarius, which would play a critical role as a lifeboat for their perilous trip back to Earth.
NASA's third manned trip to land on the surface of the Moon was beginning its three-day trip to Earth's nearest neighbor.
However, a little over two days out'”on April 13'”a fault in the electrical system of one of the oxygen tanks onboard the Service Module exploded due to overpressurization.
This caused a loss of electrical power and failure of both oxygen tanks'”the mission was crippled and mission controllers back on Earth were scrambling to keep the astronauts alive and to return them to Earth.
Page two continues with the conversation between the Capcom at Houston and the Apollo 13 astronauts.