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Meet Prof Paul Kimurto, the relative of Kelvin Kiptum, who read his eulogy

By Sammy Waweru February 25th, 2024 2 min read

Professor Paul Kimurto, a lecturer at Egerton University, was thrust into the public eye on Friday, February 23, 2024, when he delivered the eulogy for the late world marathon record holder Kelvin Kiptum.

Although little is known about the eloquent scholar, Prof Kimurto is a lecturer and researcher at Egerton University, one of Kenya’s oldest public universities, founded in 1939 as a farm school by Lord Maurice Egerton of Tatton.

Prof Paul Kimurto, Egerton University Lecturer
Prof Paul Kimurto, Egerton University Lecturer and relative of Kelvin Kiptum, pictured at a previous event in Nairobi. PHOTO | SAMMY WAWERU

During Kiptum’s funeral at Chepsamo village in Elgeiyo South Constituency, the area Member of Parliament (MP) Gideon Kimaiyo revealed to mourners and the public that Prof Kimurto was related to the athlete.

Also read: Kelvin Kiptum widow’s final emotional vow

Mr Kimaiyo urged President William Ruto, who was in attendance, to consider appointing the lecturer to a prominent government position.

The lawmaker, who is allied with the Kenya Kwanza government, argued for the researcher’s elevation, saying it would have a positive impact on Kiptum’s family.

“If Prof Kimurto is appointed to a top government position such as Chief Executive Officer (CEO), he will be able to support the entire Kiptum family given his family ties,” MP Kimaiyo appealed to President Ruto.

Dr Ruto was accompanied by his Deputy Rigathi Gachagua, Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi, Cabinet Secretaries Ababu Namwamba (Sports), Kipchumba Murkomen (Transport), and Labour CS Florence Bore, among other senior government officials and political leaders, as well as dignitaries from across Kenya’s borders.

In October 2023, Kiptum set a new marathon world record of 2:00:35 at the Chicago Marathon, beating fellow Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge’s mark.

Also read: Did the late marathoner Kelvin Kiptum’s father disown his sister?

Mr Kiptum was the first man to run the marathon in under 2 hours and 1 minute.

The record was ratified by the International Association of Athletics Federations just days before his death.

He was due to run in the Rotterdam Marathon on 14 April 2024, where he hoped to beat his own record.

At his funeral, Kiptum was remembered as a marathoner who raised Kenya’s global profile.

“We have lost an incredible star,” said CS Namwamba.

The father of two was tragically killed in a road accident along with his coach, Rwandan Gervais Hakizimana, on the Kaptagat-Eldoret road on February 11, 2024.