I've read a lot on this incident, and it is amazing the amount of people hammering the guy over his gloves.
Of everything in the video, the gloves are the easiest thing to forgive.
After getting out of the Army, I went on to become a SCUBA instructor and then a commercial diver. One of the first things we were taught is that a primal sign of severe stress is removing equipment. In fact, in enclosed space diving accidents, it is not unusual to recover the victim’s body and find him completely naked, where he has removed all his gear and wetsuit.
In fact, this is such a good indicator of stress, that we are taught to assess the general mental condition of our group by watching for people fiddling with their gear.
Have you ever been in a group waiting to go, and had a member or two holding everybody up because they were messing around with their helmet and goggles, trying to adjust their pole straps, etc? It's because they were under a high level of stress and is a sign somebody needs to intervene, not tell them to hurry the hell up.
The guy in the video was so stressed out from the event he was shucking gear, (his gloves, watch him throw away his shovel) and was still able to function as wall as he did. That shows a tremendous amount of mental strength and should be applauded.