I wish I could look for my son's body myself, says mother of drowned hero cop

David Chesire

Constable David Chesire who was swept away by floods while attempting to rescue of a family.

Photo credit: Courtesy

What you need to know:

  • David Chesire was swept away by floods while attempting to rescue of a trapped family,
  • Tragically, the 33-year-old officer accidentally stepped into an open manhole and drowned.

For three agonising months, the family of Constable David Chesire has endured a heart-breaking wait, marked by sleepless nights and the unrelenting hope that each new day would bring news of the recovery of his body. 

Since he drowned on March 24, 2024, days have stretched into weeks and months, adding to the family’s grief and despair. 

However, Chesire's family in Mogotio, Nakuru County continued clinging to the hope that the next search would finally end their torment.

That was until last Saturday, when the family held prayers in Chesire's honour after the three-month search for his body ended inconclusively.

Chesire, an officer attached to Kamukunji Police Station in Nairobi, was swept away by floods while attempting to rescue of a trapped family.

Tragically, the 33-year-old officer accidentally stepped into an open manhole and drowned. All efforts to trace and recover his body have been unsuccessful.

Elizabeth Chesire

Elizabeth Chesire, the mother to David Chesire, flanked by relatives and friends, speaks to the media at the family home in Kipsyenan, Rongai, Nakuru County on June 29, 2024. 

Photo credit: Boniface Mwangi | Nation Media Group

The police officer's mother, Elizabeth Murugi Chesire, urged the government to doing everything possible to recover her son's body.

"Sometimes I wish I had resources so that I could personally travel to Nairobi and search for my son's body. But it is not possible. He died while helping people, but since then I have not seen them coming to thank me or to visit my son's children," the distraught mother said.

The officer's father, Joseph Chesire, said the past three months have been very difficult for the family.

"It has been hard for us. Now that the water has receded, we call on the government to comb the areas they suspect his body may be,” he said.

Chesire, who was the family's breadwinner, left behind three children who are still in school.

The search for his body, led by local authorities and community volunteers, has been hampered by major challenges.

Joseph Chesire

Joseph Chesire, father to David Chesire, speaks to the media at the family home in Kipsyenan, Rongai, Nakuru County on June 29, 2024. 

Photo credit: Boniface Mwangi | Nation Media Group

The policeman's body remains unaccounted for, leaving his family in a state of grief and agony.

The family says the lack of closure has weighed heavily on them. However, they remain grateful for the tireless efforts of the search teams.

On Saturday, as those in attendance sought shade from the scorching sun under two tents, Chesire's family, visibly moved, stood united, seeking solace in their faith and the support of the community.

The family members shared personal stories of Chesire's kindness and generosity. His friends spoke of his infectious laugh and unwavering commitment to his community while his neighbours described him as someone who was always ready to lend a helping hand.

Another family member, Ezra Kimuge, said they decided to hold the prayer service so that the family could continue with other activities despite the fact that the police officer's body is still missing.

He said the family chose to hold prayers to celebrate Chesire's life instead of following traditional customs.

According to Kimuge, for the past three months, family members had been secluding themselves and had stopped celebrating other events as they mourned their missing son.

“We have not lost hope in finding his body. We all know that when a human being dies, they must be buried. We are just doing this so that the family can be allowed to continue with their lives. We lost a hero, but our lives must continue despite the lack of closure," said Kimuge.

He also thanked the government and the National Police Service for their tireless efforts to recover the body.

"Although the body is yet to be found, we are grateful for all the help we have received. We hope that one day the body will be found so that we can give him a proper burial,” Kimuge said.

At the same time, he appealed to the government not to neglect the family, noting that the police officer died while trying to save the lives of others.

"We pray that the government will step in and help the family so that the children can continue their education," he added.