Olympic medalist Daniel Rudisha, father of David, dies at 73

By MUTWIRI MUTUOTA – Associated Press – Thursday, March 7, 2019

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) – , an Olympic silver-medalist runner in 1968 and the father of two-time Olympic 800-meter champion , has died. He was 73.

made the announcement on Thursday, saying his father had a heart attack on Wednesday while undergoing dialysis treatment. The elder had struggled with diabetes for many years and had been in the intensive care unit this week.

“Our beloved father sadly left us last night,” said. “He had recovered and was on his way to fine health having been taken off the intensive care unit. He was speaking well and joking as usual while undergoing his dialysis treatment but at around 11 p.m. he suffered a sudden heart attack.

“We will try to remain strong during these difficult times.”

won silver in the 4×400-meter relay at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics, one of Kenya’s earliest successes in track. Kip Keino broke onto the scene to win gold for Kenya in the 1,500 meters at the same Olympics.

, a world record-holder and two-time world champion in the 800, often referred to his father as his inspiration. He gave his dad his first gold medal from the 2012 London Olympics, when he set the current world record. posted pictures of himself and his father on Twitter this week.

The Kenyan track federation said was a “pioneer” for Kenyan athletics.

“(He) set the foundation for the current crop of athletes,” Athletics Kenya said.

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