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NAF’s First Female Combatant Helicopter Pilot killed in auto crash — Spokesman

First female Combat Helicopter Pilot in the Nigerian Air Force, (NAF), Flying Officer Tolulope Arotile, was killed in a road accident where she sustained head injuries, at the Kaduna NAF Base.
Nigerian Air Force authority in a press statement issued by its spokesman, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola said Flying Officer Arotile died on Tuesday.
Late Flying Officer Arotile
According to the statement, Arotile, who hailed from Iffe in Ijumu Local Government Area of Kogi State, recently completed a programme at the Starlite International Training Academy, South Africa.
She died less than a year after she was decorated as the first female combatant helicopter pilot.
The statement read, “It is with great sorrow that the Nigerian Air Force regretfully announces the unfortunate demise of Flying Officer Tolulope Arotile, who died today (Tuesday), 14 July 2020, as a result of head injuries sustained from a road traffic accident at NAF Base Kaduna.”
The statement also quoted the Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Baba Abubakar, as describing Flying Officer Arotile’s death as an “irreparable loss”.
According to the Air Force, “Until her death, ‪Flying Officer Arotile, who was commissioned into the NAF in September 2017 as a member of Nigerian Defence Academy Regular Course 64, was the first-ever female combat helicopter pilot in the Service.‬
“During her short but impactful stay in the Service, the late Arotile contributed significantly to the efforts to rid the North Central States of armed bandits and other criminal elements by flying several combat missions under Operation GAMA AIKI in Minna, Niger State.
“We pray that the Almighty God grants her soul eternal rest,” the statement read.

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