Flying officer Tolulope Arotile has been laid to rest with full military honours at the National military cemetery Abuja.
Among those who paid their last respects to the departed combat helicopter pilot was the Minister of Women Affairs who alongside the chief of the air staff winged the young officer on the 15th of October 2019.
Her course mates at the Nigerian Defence Academy played the role of pallbearers, wheeling the casket bearing the flying officer’s corpse to the grave.
Among those paying their last respects to the fighter helicopter pilot is the governor of her homestead, Kogi State.
Others include the, the chief of Defence Staff, the chief of air staff, the minister of humanitarian affairs and the minister of women affairs who along side the air chief winged the young pilot on the 15th of October 2019.
In grief, the Arotiles paid their last respects in the absence of their parents who according to tradition are not allowed to witness the burial of their daughter.
The chief of the air staff describes the female combat helicopter pilot as a mentee who didn’t live long enough to fulfil her dreams.
The ceremonial volley and laying of wreaths mark the peak of the funeral.
Flying officer Tolulope Arotile was winged as the first ever female combat helicopter pilot in the Nigerian Air Force on the 15th if October 2019, after completing her flying training in South Africa where she earned a commercial pilots license.
She also undertook tactical flying training on the Augusta 1-0-9 Power Attack helicopter in Italy.
- Until her death, she earned the name Bandit Slayer due to her role in a special operation against banditry in the country.