Kenyan marathon runner Kelvin Kiptum, 24, set a new world record of 2:00:35 at the Chicago Marathon in October. Kiptum was the first man to run a marathon in under 2 hours and 1 minute. The record was officially ratified by the international athletics federation World Athletics last week.
Tragically, on Sunday, Kiptum died in a car accident along with his coach while training on a high-altitude road in Kenya. A group of athletes, including fellow Kenyan Milke Chemos, went to a hospital in Eldoret to confirm the death.
Nick Gornick, a physical therapist and running coach who witnessed Kiptum’s record-setting finish at the Chicago Marathon, expressed deep sadness and shock upon hearing about his untimely death. Gornick believed that Kiptum had the potential to finish the marathon in under two hours. He lamented that Kiptum’s death meant he would never have the chance to see him achieve his full potential on the track or in life beyond sports.