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"AHL" 2007 Obituary


AHLGREN  AHLOWALIA 

AHLGREN o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2007-10-25 published
ALLEN, Grace Margaret (née AHLGREN)
At the Saint Thomas-Elgin General Hospital on Tuesday, October 23, 2007. Grace (AHLGREN) ALLEN in her 94th year. Beloved wife of the late Elmer T. (Al) ALLEN. Loving mother of Joyce D. (Mrs. Robert BRIGGS) of Shelburne, and R.E. (Ted) ALLEN of Saint Thomas. Dear grandmother of Chris CONWAY (Barrie,) Donald BRIGGS (British Columbia,) Kimberly ALLEN (Saint Thomas,) also survived by three great-grandchildren. Predeceased by her brothers John, Lenard and Roy AHLGREN, sisters Lily SHERBUT and Esther BELL. Survived by sisters-in-law Eileen AHLGREN and Vi AHLGREN and brother-in-law Harold BELL.
Grace was born in Toronto on November 3, 1913. Daughter of the late John O. AHLGREN and Sarah P. (ELVEY) AHLGREN. She lived in the Shelburne/Orangeville area from 1949 until 1995 and lived in Saint Thomas for the past twelve years.
The family will receive their Friends at the Daniel King Funeral Home, 31 Elgin Street, Saint Thomas (519) 631-0570 on Friday from 7-9 p.m. Service to be held in the chapel on Saturday at 1: 30 p.m.. After cremation, interment will follow at the Shelburne Cemetery. Donation to the Saint Thomas-Elgin General Hospital Foundation appreciated. www.danielkingfuneralhome.com

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AHLOWALIA o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2007-01-08 published
Officer, two teens die in crash
By Greg McARTHUR, Page A9
Toronto -- A 28-year-old off-duty police officer was among three people killed in a fiery car crash Saturday morning in the Toronto suburb of Vaughn.
Constable Davis AHLOWALIA, who had been with York Regional Police for 2½ years, was killed when a westbound minivan occupied by three people swerved into oncoming traffic at 3: 30 a.m., colliding with his eastbound Honda Civic.
Two occupants of the minivan, both teenagers, were killed in the accident on Major Mackenzie Drive. The third occupant, who was severely burned, is in critical condition at the hospital, York Regional Police said late last night.
During his short time with the force, Constable AHLOWALIA launched a fundraising drive for a Jamaican orphanage. He spent many of his vacations in India and Jamaica, working with the poor and Human Immunodeficiency Virus patients. He was stationed out of the force's headquarters in Newmarket.
"This is truly a tragedy that someone so young, with so much to give is gone. Policing is a family and Davis's loss will be felt by every member of York Regional Police," Chief Armand LA BARGE said.
"We extend our deepest sympathy to Davis's many Friends and family and we will be supporting them in their time of grief."
Investigators are still trying to determine what caused the minivan to swerve. The force's traffic bureau asks anyone with any information to call 1-866-876-5423 ext. 7703, or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

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AHLOWALIA o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2007-01-12 published
Weekend crash claims fourth victim as man dies
Canadian Press, Page A10
A fiery weekend motor vehicle crash north of Toronto that killed three people, including an off-duty police officer, claimed another victim yesterday.
Mohammed MATTU, 19, who had been in critical condition since the accident early Saturday morning, has died.
Mr. MATTU and two other young men were travelling in a minivan that crossed the centre line on a road in Vaughan around 3: 30 a.m.
Constable Davis AHLOWALIA, 28, of the York Regional Police was killed when his car collided with the minivan. Both vehicles burst into flames.
The two other occupants of the minivan -- Sulman YUSAF, 19, and Waleed SHAUKAT, 18 -- died instantly in the crash.

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AHLOWALIA o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.toronto_star 2007-01-07 published
Head-on collision kills 2 teens, police officer
Van carrying teens crossed into oncoming lane on Major Mackenzie Drive, crashing into off-duty York Region police officer's car early yesterday
By Thulasi SRIKANTHAN, Staff Reporter with files from Meghan WATERS and Nick KYONKA
Every Christmas, York Region police officer Davis AHLOWALIA would buy and gift-wrap hundreds of boxes of chocolates, then drive to Nathan Phillips Square to hand them out to the homeless.
It was typical behaviour for the 28-year-old police officer, who helped raise funds for an orphanage in Jamaica and worked to feed the poor in Calcutta.
But yesterday, the man who worked hard to build a better life for others was killed in a head-on collision after a van travelling in the opposite direction crossed into his lane.
Two teenage boys from the van were also killed in the accident, near Major Mackenzie and Pine Valley Drives in Vaughan. A third passenger in the van is in critical condition at Sunnybrook Hospital. Police yesterday tentatively identified AHLOWALIA. One of the vehicles was registered in his name.
"It hasn't really sunk in yet because he is just so full of life and I can't imagine that would be taken away so quickly," said his sister-in-law Alisia D'SILVA. "He is one of the pillars of this family. It's going to be so quiet in this house. He has always been so full of life, he walks into the door and you know he's there 'cause he is always laughing."
Police remembered AHLOWALIA as a humanitarian with a warm heart. "This is truly a tragedy that someone so young with so much to give is gone," said York Police Chief Armand LA BARGE.
In the last few hours of his life, D'SILVA says AHLOWALIA was with her and one of his older brothers. They spent the evening having dinner and joking around.
"We were reminiscing about our childhoods and growing up in Indian families and joking about pranks we used to get into and the trouble we used to get into with our parents," she said.
AHLOWALIA's final stop before he left to drive home was the house of his sister-in-law's parents in York Region.
"I hugged him goodnight and went inside and he talked to his brother for a bit and got back in the car and that was it and then a couple of hours later, we got a call that he was gone," she said.
The youngest of three brothers, he grew up in a devout Catholic family. He planned to become a priest but left after a year to pursue a career in the force.
"Any sort of injustice he just couldn't stand for it, he wouldn't just sit back there and think about it, he'd get out there and do something about it."
Last October, he flew to India to work with Mother Teresa's charity, where he bought food for the homeless and cared for the mentally handicapped. His vacations were spent volunteering. "He's done more in his 28 years than most people would have in 90 years," D'SILVA said. "He has lived his life and he has touched so many people in that short time."

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AHLOWALIA o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.toronto_star 2007-01-08 published
'Kings of hearts' killed in crash
By Isabel TEOTONIO, Henry STANCU, Joanna SMITH, Staff reporters
They were known as the "kings of hearts," three Friends who were inseparable.
But on Saturday that came to a deadly end when the van they were in on Major Mackenzie Doctor in Vaughan unaccountably drifted into a lane of oncoming traffic and hit a car being driven by an off-duty York Region police officer.
Waleed SHAUKAT, 17, and his friend Sulman YUSAF, 19, were killed, along with the police officer, Davis AHLOWALIA, 28. The third teen, identified as Mohammed MATTU, 19, was in a coma last night.
It was a devastating end for what was supposed to be a fun night out celebrating a friend's birthday, said relatives of SHAUKAT, one of the teens pronounced dead on the scene.
"All three of these guys were kings -- kings of hearts -- they always had a smile and they all made people happy," said Waleed's older brother Omar SHAUKAT at the family home in Maple last night.
He described his younger brother as a happy teenager. "He had his whole life ahead of him, he was hard-working, helped out at home and everyone in this area knew him and loved him."
Waleed's father, Ali SHAUKAT, last saw his son Friday afternoon. The teen had just cashed his cheque from Tim Hortons and showed up at home with $420 in cash.
As was customary, the teen handed over all of his money to his mother and said, "Don't worry, mom, I'm young and I'll take care of you," recalled the father. Then he asked his father for $5 so that his wallet wouldn't be empty when he went out with Friends that night.
But the fun night out ground to a deadly halt around 3: 30 a.m. on Major Mackenzie Dr., west of Pine Valley Dr., when a minivan carrying the teens crashed head-on into a Honda Civic driven by AHLOWALIA.
Both cars burst into flames. SHAUKAT and YUSAF were pronounced dead at the scene. Their friend, Mattu, was rushed to hospital and was in a coma last night. Also dead at the scene was AHLOWALIA, a 2½-year veteran with the force.
Yesterday, as police continued their investigation, relatives of the teens were struggling to make sense of the horrific crash.
"We are all still in shock," said Ali SHAUKAT, as relatives gathered to comfort the grieving family at their home.
"Waleed was very lovely and very caring," said the father, recalling the generosity of a son who worked full-time to pay the family's rent. "He was the only person taking care of the family… He always respected all of his elders."
The teen was supporting both his parents, his 22-year-old brother Omar, and sisters Sara, 16, and Fyzah 9, said the father.
His uncle, Ahmed MURID, remembered him as a "very friendly guy" with "lots of Friends" who always "worked hard" and still managed to find time to volunteer in the community.
The elder SHAUKAT said he believed the trio of teens, who met in high school, may have been out celebrating MATTU's birthday. He said he did not know the circumstances surrounding the accident but believed YUSAF was the driver of the van. The father said his son dreamed of one day finishing high school and going to university.
In an online Web portfolio posted by Waleed SHAUKAT when he was 15, the teen lists his hobbies as travelling, listening to rap and bhangra music, playing basketball with Friends and going to the cinema. He also writes that he loves watching scary movies at night, meeting new people and chatting on the Internet with Friends and family around the world.
Last night, relatives at the SHAUKAT household said they were mystified by television news reports in the afternoon that MATTU had died in hospital, particularly since some had gone to visit him in the evening. Family of the two other teens could not be reached last night.

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AHLOWALIA o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.toronto_star 2007-01-09 published
Crash claims 'a true hero'
York officer's beat reached from orphans in Jamaica to the poor in Calcutta slums
By Jim WILKES, Staff Reporter
Davis AHLOWALIA's family has locked hearts with kin of a teenager who drove the van that crashed into the 28-year-old off-duty York Region police officer's car and killed him Saturday.
AHLOWALIA, Waleed SHAUKAT, 17, and his friend Sulman YUSAF, 19, all died in the inferno that engulfed the vehicles on Major Mackenzie Dr. in Vaughan. A third van occupant, Mohammed MATTU, 19, is in a coma in hospital.
"When two families get together to mourn the loss of two young children, there's not many words that can be said, but tears," Anil AHLOWALIA, Davis's older brother, told reporters crammed into the family room of his parents' home in Richmond Hill yesterday.
"As our family grieves the loss of a true Canadian hero, our condolences go out to the SHAUKAT and YUSAF families, who have also lost part of their families. We are keeping the MATTU family in our prayers during this time."
AHLOWALIA's family had gathered, not to dwell on his death, but to tell the community of his great charitable work that took him around the world.
Anil spoke of the Jamaican orphanage his brother had championed, even winning support of the police force for his efforts, and of his deeds for the poor in Calcutta last year.
"With the help of God we are trying to come to terms with the loss of a great man," he said.
"We mourn his sudden death, but more importantly, we celebrate the life of a man who gave of himself unconditionally, to his family, his Friends and everyone he met.
"(Davis's) love for family and Friends was only contested by his love for serving the poor and the unfortunate. Among his role models were Mother Teresa, John Paul II and our mother."
His parents, Anna and Rishi, wiped away tears as York police Chief Armand LA BARGE said the force would do everything it can to grow AHLOWALIA's efforts in Jamaica and help "those in their most desperate hour of need."
AHLOWALIA had been a constable 2½ years, but LA BARGE said he'd had an effect on "the entire global community.
"Davis had a sense of humanity and compassion that exceeded most people's in this world," the chief said. "Davis was always looking for somebody that needed a helping hand."
LA BARGE pointed to AHLOWALIA's work in Jamaica and Calcutta, "helping young people, helping children that are stricken with poverty and disease, suffering with Human Immunodeficiency Virus and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, helping seniors that had basically, as he put it, been discarded by society.
"To me it's like losing a son. Davis was more than just a police officer, to me Davis was a friend. He inspired all of us to do more from a Christian perspective."
Anil said his brother touched many lives.
"We are proud of our brother for fulfilling his dreams and helping so many people in so little time," he said. "As a family, we pray that Davis's senseless death will not be meaningless, that this young man's life of charity and generosity will inspire all of us to love unconditionally, to give generously and to live life to the fullest."
He read from a letter family members had found after AHLOWALIA died, a letter he had been too modest to share.
In it, the mother of a 23-year-old woman told how compassionate AHLOWALIA had been when he went to her home after her daughter had attempted suicide.
It was, Anil said, just the kind of thing their mother -- "the pillar of our family" -- had taught her sons, to "give 'til it hurts, to practise your faith.
"She's an exceptional lady, she's unbelievable and Davis took everything she said and lived it."
Visitation for AHLOWALIA will be at Chapel Ridge Funeral Home on Woodbine Ave. in Markham on Thursday from 1-4 p.m. and 6-9 p.m.
The funeral will be at Saint Mary Immaculate Church in Richmond Hill at 11 a.m. Friday.

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AHLOWALIA o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.toronto_star 2007-01-13 published
Bidding farewell to a kind soul
Family chose simple, unadorned casket, befitting the humble nature of officer who helped so many
By Christian COTRONEO, staff reporter with files from Joanna SMITH, Page B3
The casket Anil AHLOWALIA chose for his younger brother Davis was oak, without stain or ornament.
It was much like one the brothers had seen on television more than a year ago for the burial of Pope John Paul II.
"We saw this simple casket and we said, 'That's the way people should be buried -- humbleness, right to the hour of death and beyond,'" Anil recalled.
So when the AHLOWALIA family had to choose a casket for Davis, they looked past the ornate, expensive models.
"We saw one that was just oak," Anil said. "No stain. No glamour. It was made for Davis."
Only it was made too early.
Davis AHLOWALIA was killed on January 6, 2007, when an oncoming van unaccountably swerved into his lane on Major Mackenzie Doctor in Vaughan. The 28-year-old York Regional Police officer was off duty at the time.
In all, the fiery crash claimed four victims. The driver of the van, Waleed SHAUKAT, 17, and 19-year-old passenger Sulman YUSAF died on the scene.
The driver's mother, Mansoora SHAUKAT, said yesterday in a telephone interview that she was sorry to learn her son's other close friend, Muhammed MATTU, had succumbed to his injuries Thursday night after spending the week in hospital in critical condition.
"A very cute boy, Muhammed," she said.
She remembers the 17-year-old, whose family she said lives in the Peace Village neighbourhood of Maple, Ontario, often coming home with her son to watch movies or eat pizza in the basement.
"They were very close Friends, all three -- Muhammed, Sulman and Waleed."
Yesterday 1,000 mourners -- more than the church could bear -- attended the funeral for the fallen officer.
For a few frozen moments, traffic along a bustling four-block stretch of Yonge St. in Richmond Hill was hushed. Police officers held cars at bay. The soft strains of a devotional hymn floated outside Saint Mary Immaculate Roman Catholic Church.
Scores more officers -- Royal Canadian Mounted Police in scarlet and polished leather riding boots, York Regional Police in red-brimmed caps and Ontario Provincial Police officers in full regalia -- lined the church steps outside. When the oak casket emerged, they held a long salute, bidding a final farewell to one of their own.
"Although he only served for a short time, he made an incredible impact on our community," said York Regional Police Chief Armand LA BARGE after the service. "Every human contact, every radio call, every interaction that he had, he brought his Christian values to the forefront and helped people."
A fervent Christian, AHLOWALIA travelled to impoverished regions of the world whenever he could, persuading his fellow officers to lend a hand to an orphanage in Jamaica, and helping the poor in Calcutta, India.
Parents and older brothers joined a grim procession of family, following the casket down the church steps. "Today, I had the difficult task of burying my brother," said Anil AHLOWALIA, his voice breaking, as he spoke after the funeral. "It's one of the hardest things I've ever had to do in my life."
Chris GRANT, who attended Saint Michael's College School with AHLOWALIA, joined about 100 former schoolmates and teachers at the service, many wearing their school ties in memory of the departed.
"I mostly remember him walking around on game days, wearing his football jersey," GRANT said. "He was very proud to be on the team."
GRANT recalled his schoolmate wanted to be a priest -- "but decided to serve his community in a different way."
That desire led AHLOWALIA to police college, where he met Ryan STEVENSON, also training to be an officer.
"He would always take time out of his day to stop and say hello, ask how you are and how your family is," said STEVENSON, now a special constable with York Regional Police.
Even then, it was obvious that AHLOWALIA's ambitions went beyond the badge. "He used policing as a springboard into what he did in the community," said STEVENSON.
Indeed, during the hiring process, AHLOWALIA was asked why he wanted to become a police officer -- and, according to Chief LA BARGE, he answered, "to help people in the most need."

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