"They had three pararescue jumpers. As soon as they had found where we were at… they jumped in to get to us as quick as they could… In a handful of minutes, somebody was tapping on the window next to me, giving me the OK symbol, and I was answering back with a big smile, and then they had the hatch open," Hague said on Wednesday, as broadcast by NASA.
The astronaut added that he was "amazed" at the quick response of the rescue crew.
"You know, they practice this all the time, but they haven't had to put it to use in 35 years… To respond the way they did is a true testament to how seriously they take their responsibilities, and their job," Hague noted.
"I was not surprised by their support and how well they worked. It's on display every day over there, and it's a privilege to be part of it," he stressed.
Hague said that he was feeling "great," and his physical condition was "awesome," as he had 10 miles (1.6 kilometers) run with his wife on Wednesday morning.
On October 11, the Soyuz-FG launch vehicle failed to launch the Soyuz MS-10 spacecraft, with Hague and Ovchinin on board, toward the International Space Station (ISS) from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Just minutes after the liftoff, the mission was aborted due to the booster's malfunction. The two-man crew escaped in a rescue capsule and returned back unharmed. Immediately afterward, an investigation into the incident was launched in Russia.