Lawyer Paul Gicheru was on Thursday buried at his home on Cider Dairy farm in Kwa-Nguku village in Bahati, Nakuru County, even as the probe into his death is yet to be concluded.
Family, friends, neighbours and his colleagues, including lawyers from the Law Society of Kenya, gathered to pay their last respects to the renowned lawyer.
Among them was his mother, who had not attended a memorial service held on Tuesday at the Regina Coeli parish in Karen, Nairobi.
Speakers eulogised Mr Gicheru as a loving man who always put his family ahead.
His widow, Ms Ruth Nyambura, said her husband of 23 years was a great family man, loving, and generous.
The mother of three said he related well with their neighbours in Nairobi, Eldoret and Nakuru regardless of their backgrounds.
“You have been a great family man. I can't believe you are no more. Fare thee well, my dear husband, I will take care of our children and support them,” she said.
“We will always know that dad loved us but God loved him more. We will meet him again. Do not feel like he is gone, he will forever be with us.”
Mr Obadiah Kihara, a family friend, regretted that Mr Gicheru’s death had been politicised instead of the family being supported and given time to mourn their loved one.
He said families always have fights and Mr Gicheru’s was not exceptional, and that people should not use the death to spread propaganda that tarnishes the family's image.
People should stop spreading lies, he said, adding that Mr Gicheru is not here to defend himself and his relatives should be left alone.
“Gicheru has left a young family behind who need time to heal. Let the children be. We know that they will grow to be like their father, who was a great man,” he said.
“Do not spread stories, because it is not benefiting anyone but [could only break up the family].”
Senior counsel John Khaminwa described Mr Gicheru as an astute, hardworking lawyer with solid legal knowledge, and a man with good humour who always lit up a room whenever he was around.
His death shocked the world
He said he knew Mr Gicheru as an outstanding man in mind and character, and his death shocked not only Kenya but also the rest of the world.
He said he had handled Mr Gicheru’s cases in court and he was always a straight and focused man, contrary to the controversy and propaganda surrounding his death.
Dr Khaminwa said only those who were close to him knew that he was an honest person committed to his job and to making Kenya a better place.
"We want the family to remain united. We don’t want to hear tomorrow that cases have been filed in court and hear people are walking in the corridors of justice. That will be contrary to Paul’s wish. We want to see a united family," he said
He recalled his birthday celebration in September, when he invited Mr Gicheru for dinner at his home, asking him to bring his wife and children along.
He said Mr Gicheru obliged and requested his favourite meal – ugali with chicken – adding that the night was lively and filled with humour.
Dr Khaminwa said Mr Gicheru openly showed his love for his family and always excused himself to go home and see his children before they went to bed.
“When we were young, the love between our parents and their children was not open, but you could see in Paul he loved his family and indeed gave the children a good education by sending them to the United Kingdom for their studies," he said.
He added that Mr Gicheru "was a man who was progressive, who wanted to make Kenya a better country for everyone to be proud of".
Mr Lazarus Kimana, a neighbour of the family in Karen, said Mr Gicheru was always calm, related well with his neighbours and did not quarrel with anyone.
He said they had lost a hardworking man who was dedicated to community activities as he always made himself available despite his busy schedule.
Mr Gicheru was born in November 1972 in Kipkaren, Nandi North, the third-born in a family of eight children.
He attended Laborer Primary School and joined Kapsabet Boys, graduating in 1990. He then proceeded to the University of Nairobi, from where he graduated with a law degree.