Faith Kipyegon pays tribute to Kelvin Kiptum

Double Olympic gold medallist Faith Kipyegon joined other mourners at a requiem mass for marathon world record holder Kelvin Kiptum at ACK St Peter’s Chepkorio church in Elgeyo Marakwet County.

Kipyegon paid her last respects to her fellow athlete, with whom she has shared the world stage in recent times, receiving accolades for their outstanding achievements on the track.

The two athletes were feted at the 2023 World Athletics Awards in Monte Carlo, Monaco, where Kipyegon was named Female World Athlete of the Year on the track, while Kiptum won the Male World Athlete of the Year award.

Kipyegon and Kiptum were also named Africa’s top male and female athletes for 2023 by the Confederation of African Athletics (CAA).

In the same year, the influential New African Magazine, the best-selling pan-African magazine, named the two elite athletes among the 100 most influential Africans of 2023.

Double Olympic Gold Medalist in 1,500m and 5,000m Faith Kipyegon second (left), and other mourners during a requiem mass for the late Kelvin Kiptum. February 22, 2024. PHOTO| JARED NYATAYA


Earlier today, Kiptum’s body left Eldoret Hospital mortuary for his final resting place amid a flurry of activities.

Among those present were the deceased athlete’s immediate family and friends, plus his colleagues in the athletics family including two-time World Half Marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor, Selly Chepyego, Betsy Saina, Julius Yego, Joyciline Jepkosgei, Amos Kiprut, Vivian Cheruiyot among others

At Iten, a short sermon was conducted by Reverend Chumo from the Anglican Church of Kenya where the deceased used to fellowship.

Later, the procession snaked through Uganda Road onto Iten Road where the public turned out in large numbers to pay their last respects to the fallen hero.

Kiptum, 24, died suddenly following a car crash along the Eldoret Kaptagat road on February 11.

His coach Gervais Hakizimana also perished in the accident.

The celebrated athlete’s death came months after he set a men’s world record of 2 hours and 35 seconds in the Chicago Marathon.

He will be laid to rest at his home village on Friday in what is expected to be a state event attended by President William Ruto.

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