LEYDEN, Mass. (WWLP) – 62 year old James Hansmann died Sunday morning, while landing a parachute in Ellington, Connecticut.
Connecticut State police said he was critically injured during a “hard landing” in the parachute drop zone at Ellington Airport. A resident of both Springfield and West Springfield, Hansmann was a Detective Lt. for 14 years in the Leyden Police Department.
“My sympathy goes out for the family its a tragic accident, a lot of times it happens that way,” said Charles Kimplin of Greenfield.
He had one son and three daughters and was engaged to be married. Connecticut State Police said his parachute was functioning properly and there was no criminal aspect to the incident.
Detective Lt. James Hansmann was a valuable asset to the Leyden police department. He was skilled with computers, analyzing fingerprints, and solved several big cases in Franklin County. He also helped build a military vehicle that the police used for search and rescue operations.
Leyden Police Chief Daniel Galvis told 22News Hansmann was always on call and would drive up from Springfield whenever they needed him.
“He was not only a dedicated detective, he was a close friend,” said Chief Galvis. “He’s been with us for 14 years. I don’t have words to describe how I feel right now. I’ll never be able to replace him.”
Hansmann was a veteran of more than 5,000 parachute jumps. Chief Galvis said Hansmann would often say, “If that’s the way I got to go, I’ll have no regrets.”