Flying Officer Tolulope Arotile was laid to rest yesterday (23rd July 2020), at the military cemetery on Airport Road, Abuja.

She was accorded full military honours as the hierarchy of the Nigerian Military led by the Chief of Defence Staff, General Gabriel Olonisakin paid tributes.

The remains were lowered into the grave at exactly 11.05 AM followed by a barrage of 21 gunshots.

At the burial to pay final respects to Nigeria’s first female combat helicopter pilot are members of her family; the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Abubakar Sadique; Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Gabriel Olonisakin; Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello and his wife; House Committee Chairman on Air Force, Bala Ib’n Nalla, amongst other dignitaries.

An ambulance belonging to the Nigerian Air Force with registration number AF 442 brought in the body.

The burial of Flying Officer Tolulope Arotile at the military cemetery on Airport Road
The burial of Flying Officer Tolulope Arotile at the military cemetery on Airport Road

The country was thrown into mourning last week when the Nigerian Air Force announced that the country’s first female combat helicopter pilot died from a road traffic accident at the NAF base in Kaduna State.

The air force said the female officer sustained head injuries from the accident when she was “inadvertently hit by the reversing vehicle of an excited former Air Force secondary school classmate while trying to greet her.”

NAF disclosed that Arotile was hit by an ex-classmate, Nehemiah Adejoh, who had no valid driver’s licence, noting that the matter, being a civil case, would be transferred to the Nigeria Police Force.

Chief of Air Staff, Bello, others pay final respects to Arotile
Chief of Air Staff, Bello, others pay final respects to Arotile.

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