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Dr. Johansen Oduor: Kelvin Kiptum Died From Head Injuries

Dr. Johansen Oduor: Kelvin Kiptum Died From Head Injuries

Kenya’s Chief Government pathologist has revealed that the late World Men’s Marathon record holder, Kelvin Kiptum suffered severe head injuries after releasing the postmortem result.

The 24 year-old passed away through a tragic road accident that happened along Elgeyo Marakwet-Ravine road on February 11, 2024.

The government pathologist Dr. Johansen Oduor, conducted the postmortem at Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital (MTRH) in Eldoret, Usain Gishu County, and presented the findings on Wednesday, which shed light on the circumstances that led to Kiptum’s death.

After thorough and intensive procedure, we found out that he had severe head injuries, including injuries at the base of the skull and the spinal cord had intruded into the cranial cavity because of the fractures,” said Dr. Oduor.

Dr. Odour’s postmortem report detailed traumas suffered by Kiptum, that included significant fractures to his ribs on both sides and lung contusions, indicative of intense impact. 

“We also found fractures on both side of the ribs. On the left side, the first, second, and third ribs were fractured. On the right, the first, second, third, fourth, fifth, and seventh ribs were fractured. There was also what is called contusion on the lungs, meaning there were also injuries to the lungs, Dr. Oduor added, emphasizing the severity of the internal damage.

The findings concluded that the cause of Kiptum’s death was severe lung injuries, mostly seen in motor vehicle accidents.

“So, what killed Kelvin was severe lung injuries, and when I look at them, they appear more like something that has been caused by a motor vehicle accident,” Dr. Oduor stated.

The pathologist also mentioned that that samples have been taken for a full toxicological analysis to determine if any other factors might have contributed to Kiptum’s accident.

“Apart from today’s postmortem, we have taken samples from the body for toxicology analysis to help determine what may have caused the accident,” he said.

Present during the release of the postmortem report was the late marathoner’s father Samson Cheruiyot, Director of Criminal Investigation (DCI) homicide officers led by Head of Homicide, Martin Nyuguto among others.

The family spokesperson, Philip Kiplagat, said they were satisfied with the postmortem report and would proceed to bury Kiptum.

There will be procession in honor of KIptum through the streets of Eldoret tomorrow, to give the public the opportunity to pay their last respects ahead of his burial slated for Friday at his home in Naiberi in Uasin Gishu County.


  • John Vaselyne

    John Vaselyne is the founder of Athletics News. Africa’s only Independent Athletics News website. He has covered World U18 and U20 Championships, World Cross Country Championships, Four Continental Tour Gold Series, Wanda Diamond League. He has passion for the Sport and has over seven years experience in this area of sport. He is also the Leading Athletics Pundit in the Country, having been hosted in ALL leading TV stations in Kenya

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