Breaking News

Holder Kelvin

Tragic Accident Claims Life of Marathon World Record Holder Kelvin Kiptum and Coach Gervais Hakizimana

Nairobi, February 12, 2024, The Europe Today: Kenya’s marathon world record holder, Kelvin Kiptum, and his coach, Gervais Hakizimana, lost their lives in a tragic traffic accident in the Rift Valley on Sunday. The untimely demise has abruptly ended the promising career of the 24-year-old athlete, who made history by being the only man to complete the marathon in less than two hours and one minute.

Kelvin Kiptum set the world record at the Chicago Marathon in October 2023, achieving a remarkable time of two hours and 35 seconds. His achievement surpassed the previous record of 2:01:09 held by compatriot Eliud Kipchoge in Berlin in 2022. Kiptum, having clocked three of the seven fastest marathon times in history, had ambitious plans for the upcoming Rotterdam Marathon in April, where he aimed to become the first man to run the marathon in under two hours in race conditions. Additionally, he aspired to make his Olympic debut in Paris in July.

World Athletics President Sebastian Coe expressed deep sorrow over the loss, stating, “An incredible athlete leaving an incredible legacy, we will miss him dearly. On behalf of all World Athletics, we send our deepest condolences to their families, friends, team mates, and the Kenyan nation.”

The tragic incident occurred when Kiptum was driving with his Rwandan coach and a woman near the Rift Valley village where he was born. The accident claimed the lives of Kiptum and Coach Hakizimana at the scene, while the woman, identified as Sharon Kosgey, survived with serious injuries and received medical treatment at a local hospital.

Local police commander Peter Mulinge stated, “This was a self-involved accident,” as investigations into the circumstances continue.

Despite the late hour, tributes poured in for Kelvin Kiptum from senior Kenyan politicians and government officials. Former Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga expressed his grief on social media, saying, “Devastating news as we mourn the loss of a remarkable individual, Kelvin Kiptum, World Record holder and Kenyan athletics icon. My deepest condolences to his loved ones, friends, and the entire athletics fraternity. Our nation grieves the profound loss of a true hero.”