Kenya’s pioneer athlete Omwanza burial set for Friday 4th

The final burial plans for the late Kenya’s pioneer athlete Daniel Omwanza have been completed.

According to Athletics Kenya chairman, Nyanza chapter Peter Angwenyi, Omwanza who competed for the country at independence will be laid to rest on 4th March 2022 at his home in Ibero village, Nyaribari Chache constituency, Kisii county.

“The burial will take place on Friday next week and we hope all will go on well as planned. The requiem mass will be held at Nyanturago playing ground in his rural home before his body is entered at Ibero village,” said Angwenyi.

Angwenyi noted that although the burial date has been set, the family need financial assistance from well wishers to accord the fallen former track record holder a befitting send-off.

The legend died aged 74 last week from high blood pressure complications while receiving treatment at Upper Hill Medical Centre, Nairobi.

Angwenyi mourned Omwanza, who competed for team Kenya during independence as a great athlete, coach and mentor of many athletes in the country.

Omwanza, popularly known as Omoisi Omobe, was part of the quartet consisting of Robert Ouko and Julius Sang, both deceased, as well as Charles Asati and Hezekiah Nyamao made the cut for the 4x400m relay Olympic games in Munich.

He was controversially dropped from the team in favour of Sang who hailed from Narok for a national outlook.

 The team went on to win a gold medal for Kenya in 1972. He would later switch to the 800m. He had won the 400m and 800m races during the Kenyan trials for the Games.

Some of his best shots were in the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal in 800m after clocking 1min 46.1 sec.

He would also rise to sprint in 400m, 800m, 1,000m and 1,500m winning gold medals.

Daniel Omwanza has passed the mantle to his daughter Beatrice Omwanza who is a long-distance runner.

She is trying to fit in her father’s gigantic shoes where in 2003 and 2005, she competed in the marathon and half marathon races at the World Championships recording a personal best of 2:27:19 hours.?

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