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‘I’m dying sis,’ Kunguru’s last words to the sister, Irene Onguru

The sudden death of Kenyan artist and philanthropist Eric Okoth Onguru, better known as Kunguru, has left a void in the hearts of his family, friends, and fans.

His family held a funeral service at the Montezuma and Monalisa Funeral Home on Wednesday, March 29.

Several friends and former campus mates paid their respects to the generous soul who had touched so many lives.

During the funeral, Kunguru’s sister, Irene Onguru, shared some of her best moments with her brother, whom she accompanied to about three hospitals where the late artist was admitted.

Also read: ‘Best collabo-mate,’ Mr Lenny gives moving tribute at Kunguru’s requiem mass

She said that Kunguru paid her school fees from high school to college level and ensured that her life at school was smooth.

Irene noticed that her brother was ailing when his skin colour suddenly changed to pale during Christmas last year. This led to his journey in and out of hospitals to treat his liver complications.

“I asked him, what is wrong Eric? I just left the other day and you were okay, what has happened? He didn’t face me but he told me, ‘Irene, I’m dying’. I thought it was a joke but she repeated it three times. I thought Eric was joking,” Irene said.

A friend supports Kunguru’s sister Irene Onguru during the eulogy reading at the requiem mass. PHOTO| Wilfred Nyangaresi


Kunguru’s brother, Michael Ouma, described him as the unity in their family, and the two of them were frequently involved in making family decisions.

“Anything to do with confrontations, I can attest, Eric was not confrontational…if he was not happy with any family decision, he could switch off and that would be the end.”

Also read: Rest well! Legendary musician Kunguru’s last thoughts before he died

StanChart’s Edith Chumba, who spoke on behalf of bankers who attended the funeral and worked with Kunguru in the banking sector, described Kunguru as a strong salesperson during his early days in the sector.

Edith Chumba of Standard Chartered Business Banking Kenya and East Africa at the requiem mass. PHOTO| Wilfred Nyangaresi


Also read: MP Samuel Atandi: Kunguru planned on running for MP seat

She recalled the moments when Kunguru was complaining of pain due to diabetes and would ask for an excuse to go outside.

“Sometimes we could in a meeting and he tells me, ‘Boss, just one minute’, and then he goes [outside] and when he comes back, he had no strength but he held on. I would have fired Eric five years ago…but his health, I saw in his heart that he wanted to do this, because when Eric was okay, he worked his heart out,” Ms Chumba said.

The music industry has also lost one of its best artists. Mr Lenny, who recorded some hits with the late Kunguru, attended the funeral service alongside Kenyan legendary musician Nameless.

Kunguru’s legacy will live on through his music and the lives he touched.

He will be buried on April 1, 2023 in his home town in Alego Usonga.

Also read: God, give them strength: Kunguru mourned by family, friends, and fans