NAIROBI, Kenya, May 17- The athletics fraternity continued mourning the departed Olympics Marathon champion, Samuel Wanjiru for the second day after his untimely demise on Sunday.
In a statement sent from his National Olympics Committee- Kenya office retired legend and twice Olympics champion, Kipchoge Keino, was among those who paid his respects to the fallen star.
“His death is a big loss and has robbed this nation and the world of a rising star and a role model. It is because of his prowess of becoming the first Kenyan to win a marathon Olympic gold medal that the country’s national anthem was the last to be played on the grand arena shortly before the closing ceremony,” Kipchoge said in a statement released Tuesday.
World 10km record holder, Leonard Patrick Komon, who returned to the country on Monday night from breaking the Central Park 10km record in New York on Saturday in 27:35 said;
“This is all too hard to believe. Such a talented runner did not deserve to meet his death at such an early age. He has left a rich legacy, made history and left us athletes with an example to follow.
“His death will not be in vain since it has taught us valuable lessons,” Komon stated.
With his body now lying in Nairobi, his controversial death took another twist when his mother, Hannah Wanjiru claimed her son was murdered in his bedroom and asked police officers investigating the Sunday incident to quiz his spouse Trizah Njeri Kamau.
The revelations unearthed from a statement she lodged with the police cited claims of blood on the bed sheets as well as the fact that the spouse did not inform her of the alleged fatal fall immediately and she had to learn it from a relative.
Ms Wanjiru, a former worker at a Nyahururu Children’s home lives only a few metres from the house in which the deceased is said to have plunged to his death after a domestic row with his wife.
His manager, Federico Rosa is expected in Kenya on Friday to join the plans in place to give Wanjiru, the Chicago Marathon titleholder, a befitting send off.
In an interview with CNN World Sport, Rosa stated he did not believe the star did not commit suicide as first reported by police.
Below are the excerpts availed to Capital Sport from the broadcaster.
CNN World Sport: When did you find out and what was your initial reaction?
Federico: Well I found out tonight (Sunday), I was called from Kenya to say the accident happened and he was moved to hospital. They said he was unconscious and bleeding heavily. After twenty minutes they called me back to say he had died. That was about 2am Kenyan time. It was a shock.
CNN World Sport: There seems to be a lack of clarity with regards to events surrounding his death, do you know any more than we do?
Federico: No I have no more details other than he fell from his balcony. All I know is what I have seen on the news. I tried calling the police station for more news but they are yet to finish their investigation. They said he had a fight with his wife but I don’t know any more than that.
CNN World Sport: It’s very sad indeed, the police said they think it might be suicide, would that be (interruption)
Federico: No, no it was not suicide at all.
CNN World Sport: That’s not your opinion?
Federico: No, no I’m 100% certain it was not suicide, that’s all that I can tell you. I’m certain it wasn’t suicide.
CNN World Sport: Have you had that information from any particular source or is that just your feeling on this story?
Federico: I talked to him yesterday, he seemed very relaxed, happy and everything was cool. They said it looks like he might have jumped in a certain way but it was because had slipped and hit his head. I can guarantee there were no problems in the past and it was not suicide at all.
CNN World Sport: Whilst there has been so much talk about his death, the domestic issues have also been mentioned, do you feel they have any role to play in this incident or do you think that’s completely separate?
Federico: I don’t know the situation, I was with them ten days ago, everything seemed to be quite normal but of course there were the stories. He is a normal human being that was the consequence of the problem.
CNN World Sport: Well Kenya has lost a great, great runner, very sad indeed, Federico thank you very much for your time we do appreciate it thank you.
Federico: I think the world has lost the greatest runner in living history.