Kenya’s first Olympic medalist dies at 84

Wilson Chuma Kiprugut, Kenya’s first Olympic medalist thanks to his third place in the 800 meters at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, died Tuesday at the age of 84, the Kenyan Athletics Federation announced Wednesday.
“Chuma was one of those athletes who put Kenya on the world map. This is a sad day for the country and for the world of athletics. He was an extraordinary man,” said Jackson Tuwei, president of the federation.
Wilson Kiprugut died Tuesday in Kericho hospital in the west of the country after losing consciousness at home, his family said.
His bronze medal at the 1964 Olympics was “extremely valuable because it was the first ever for Kenya, inspiring other athletes to shine on the Olympic stage,” his national federation said.
After his third place in 1964, behind the New Zealand legend Peter Snell, the Kenyan athlete won silver at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, again in the 800m, ahead of the Australian Ralph Doubell, who broke the world record that day.
After his retirement from sport, Wilson Chuma Kiprugut was employed as a supervisor in the tea plantations of a British multinational company in Kericho.