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Fanfare as youthful model is laid to rest

Residents of Kambungu village, Embu county were over the weekend treated to a rare burial ceremony, after mourners engaged in fanfare and merrymaking amid the sorrowful atmosphere.

The burial of popular model Linzie Mumbi, who would have turned 23 on the day she was interred, was marked with color and pomp, with mourners dressed in bright white and red attires, cutting a birthday cake and singing happy songs.

According to Linzie’s sister, Natasha Makena, 21, the deceased had three months ago, during the burial of her grandfather, expressed a wish that people celebrate her life rather than be plunged in sorrow.

She had also wished to be buried on her birthday, a wish that came to pass.

The mourners who included National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi, Deputy Speaker Joyce Laboso, Embu Senator Lenny Kivuti, MPs Rose Mitaru and Muriuki Njagagua and Embu County Assembly Speaker Kariuki Mate, later released 23 white doves and brightly coloured balloons to mark her life.

None of the members of the immediate family wore black.


However, beneath the veneer of the show of bliss, the family of Nakuru county Procurement Director Eliezer Ngarari and Dr Jane Ngarari is still struggling to come to terms with the death of the multi-talented beauty.

Ms Nagarari, who was with her daughter when she died, told the mourners that they had not yet received a death certificate since the cause of Linzie’s death was unknown.

She said that an inquest had been opened to establish the cause of death after a post morterm didn’t give a conclusive finding.

Linzie, a mechanical engineer, passed on in the UK where she was studying Aerospace Technology at the Coventry University and would have graduated on September 10 this year.

Her mother narrated how Linzie developed a bout of vomiting, ostensibly from a food bug and passed on the same day.

Mr Ngarari said they were still puzzled at the death and were anxious to know the truth.


The couple recounted how they had stayed for long frustrating years after marriage without getting a child.

“We are worried since we are yet to know what she died of. We will wait for God’s blessings in other ways,” he said.

Linzie was a diva, who lived life to the fullest and had expressed a desire to return to Kenya and become a commercial pilot.

She was the face of many adverts as early as when she was eight, with her radiant face graced various billboards across the country at the turn of the millennium.

Most notable among them was that of the giant Ribena billboard at the Museum Hill roundabout in Nairobi and another by the railway bridge while entering Nakuru town from the capital.

Linzie was a runner up in the Face of Kenya UK beauty pageant held in Birmingham in 2013.