Police Officer Vilho O. Ahola

Police Officer Vilho O. Ahola

Petaluma Police Department, California

End of Watch Sunday, February 1, 1998

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Vilho O. Ahola

Police Officer Vilho O. Ahola succumbed to a gunshot wound sustained on November 7th, 1969, when he was shot in the neck and rendered a quadriplegic.

He had responded to a domestic disturbance at 818 I Street and was standing by as the female party removed items from the residence. A short time later, the male subject produced a small handgun and ordered Officer Ahola to hand over his service weapon. A struggle ensued for the suspect's weapon, and Officer Ahola was shot in the neck.

After Officer Ahola passed away, the Sonoma County Coroner's Office ruled his death a result of complications of quadriplegia due to a gunshot wound to the neck.

Officer Ahola was a United Air Force veteran and had served with the Petaluma Police Department for seven years. He is survived by his wife and two sons.

In 2016, State Highway 101, known as the "Old Redwood Highway Interchange," located at the north end of the City of Petaluma, was renamed the Police Officer Vilho Ahola Memorial Interchange.

Bio

  • Age 70
  • Tour 7 years
  • Badge 1
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Friday, November 7, 1969
  • Weapon Handgun; .25 caliber
  • Offender Convicted of assault

domestic

Most Recent Reflection

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We have just passed your memorial sign and I am struck by the fact that you were providing protection to a woman when you were shot. A powerful example of service. Thank you. You are not forgotten.

Sue McDonald
Retired Midwife

March 1, 2022

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