Chief Master Sgt. James M. Traficante was on the B-17 as a passenger on Wednesday and survived the crash.

WINDSOR LOCKS, CT (WFSB) -- A Connecticut Air National guardsman aboard the B-17 plane that crashed on Wednesday morning is being thanked for his efforts during this tragic incident.

Chief Master Sgt. James Traficante was on the plane when it crashed at Bradley Airport.

He was injured in the crash and was taken to Hartford Hospital, and has since been released.

The Connecticut National Guard said Traficante is a current command chief for the 103rd Airlift Wing, and is a trained C-130 loadmaster.

On the flight, he had brought his military issued flame retardant flight gloves.

Using those gloves, Traficante was able to open a hatch on the plane and get other passengers off following the crash, the Air National Guard said.

Traficante was also identified as one of the Simsbury volunteer firefighters that was on board the flight. 

In response to the crash, the Connecticut National Guard deployed several assets to assist in the emergency response, including fire and emergency medical services, mobile emergency operations center, cooling stations, and shelters for the responding crews.

“The Connecticut National Guard is thankful that our Airman on board the aircraft is safe and I ask that you respect his and his family’s privacy as he recovers,” said Maj. Gen. Francis Evon, The Adjutant General of the Connecticut National Guard. “Our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected by this tragic accident. We are grateful for our firefighters who responded and who have worked tirelessly in supporting crash and recovery operations. The response to the B-17 crash was a joint effort and a great example of state and local municipalities working together. We will continue to provide support any way we can.”

Copyright 2019 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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