The pioneer of Kenyan running, Daniel Rudisha, dies of a heart attack at age 73

Athletics Kenya reports that Daniel Rudisha, silver medallist for Kenya in the 4x400m relay at the 1968 Olympics and father to two-time Olympic champion David Rudisha, died in Kenya Wednesday at age 73.

Rudisha has been called one of the pioneers of running in Kenya. His relay teammates in Mexico City were Hezekiah Nyamao, Charles Asati and Naftali Bon. Four years later, Asati and Nyamao were on the 4x400m relay team that won gold in Munich. 

Rudisha’s son David is the reigning Olympic champion in the 800m, after successfully defending his 2012 title. He has also won two world championships at the distance, and is the world record-holder (1:40.91, from his gold-medal performance at the 2012 Olympics in London, improving on his own record twice).

The Daily Nation reported that Rudisha died of a heart attack. David Rudisha is quoted as saying “He is my hero and the man behind my athletics success.”

posted Friday March 8th