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Apollo 13’s Fred Haise says it’s important to ‘Never Panic Early’

US President Richard Nixon meets the Apollo 13 astronauts in Honolulu, Hawaii, after their safe return to Earth.
US President Richard Nixon meets the Apollo 13 astronauts in Honolulu, Hawaii, after their safe return to Earth.

In April 1970, three astronauts and a team here on Earth dared to attempt what was expected to be the third moon landing.  

But just 56 hours into the mission something happened that now famously caused everything to go sideways.

“Okay, Houston, we’ve had a problem here.”

The crew of Apollo 13 would not make it to the Moon. Instead, they became subject to a full-fledged effort to get them back to Earth alive. 

Their Lunar Excusion Module, or LEM, had todouble as a space lifeboat. But it had not been designed to act as one. 

The LEM’s pilot was Fred Haise. That remarkable story and many more are laid out for the first time his book “Never Panic Early.” 

Fred Haise spoke to 1A from his home in Pasadena, Texas.

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