Preparedness Notes for Friday – April 13, 2018

On April 13th, 1970, disaster struck 200,000 miles from earth when oxygen tank number two blew up on Apollo 13. Mission commander Lovell reported the now famous words “Houston, we’ve had a problem here.” The landing mission was aborted and the next four days were spent inventing innovative ways to create survival equipment out of various hardware on hand as well as performing emergency, untested procedures and maneuvers to bring the crippled craft back to earth. On April 17, with the world anxiously watching, Apollo 13 astronauts touched down safely in the Pacific Ocean.


  1. James Lovell, I think. I can remember this still. I was struggling to stay alive with Dengue fever, and armpit deep in the Cambodian invasion, that year. The Army Times that got passed around gave a clear account of it. I should have worried more about my own health, but I was very relieved when they got back alive. Delirious with fever, I asked about their fate at 9th Evac. hospital in Long Binh. The astronauts were and remain heroes to me still. They took much bigger risks than me, and came through when lesser men would have died. Combat after that seemed not to be dangerous to me. We never lacked clean air to breathe, and the jungle was everything but bone chilling cold. And I still hate flying.

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