The crew of Apollo 13. From left to right are mission commander Jim Lovell, command module pilot John Swigert and lunar module pilot Fred W. Haise.
Image courtesy NASA.

In 1970 on this date, Apollo 13 launched from Cape Canaveral, carrying James Lovell, Jim Swigert and Fred Haise.

Although Apollo 13 was slated to be the United States’ third lunar landing mission, it was aborted mid-flight after the service module oxygen tank ruptured. Still, the mission was classified as a “successful failure” because of the experience gained in rescuing the crew.