Kenya’s Deputy President William Ruto led athletes drawn from across the country mourned the departed former world 400m hurdles champion Nicholas Bett who was buried today at his home in Simat, Uasin Gishu County.
When each athlete moved to watch the body, tears rolled freely prompting head coach Julius Kirwa to provide a crying shoulder.
IAAF athletes representative and multiple world steeplechase champion Ezekiel Kemboi, 400m runner Maximila Imali failed to control their emotions during their speeches.
Three time world 1,500m champion Asbel Kiprop and champion Eliud Kipchoge and Imali spoke on behalf of athletes who recounted on how Bett was an outing going runner.
Imali said that they suffered together in Nigeria but he managed to ensure that we were happy in the camp. It is painful to lose painful to lose such young talent.
“Despite his nagging injury, he was a man who determined to take on the rest. As athletes, we encouraged him and gave him confidence that he can run but he left us due to God’s plan. As a Christian, I encourage every athlete that bett has left us but that is our way,” mourned Imali.
She advised Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinett, who was present to take one of the families to be recruited in the police to replace Bett.
“I am appealing to the IG that during police recruitment exercise, we would like to recruit one of the family member fill Bett’s gap,” added Imali.
Kiprop who was in the world Athletics championships in Beijing, China said it was a sad, moment to lose a neighbor whom they have been working together and the world, Africa and Kenya as a whole have lost a treasure.
We have lost treasure to every individual across the globe. As a member of Beijing team and coming from the same area, we won gold for this country and topped the world. That was the most memorable moment for both the country, athletes and the world at large,” said Kiprop.
Bett was a police officer based at the Kondele Police station in Kisumu County, was accorded the ceremonial police send off by his former comrades.