‘I am devastated’: Singer KarehB on son who died in Chavakali Boys road crash

School accident Chavakali Boys

Mugithi singer Mary Wangare Gioche populary known as KarehB and departed son Joseph Mwadulo who died in a bus accident on April 2. The bus,  was transporting students from Chavakali Boys High School for the April holidays. 

Photo credit: Pool

What you need to know:

  • Never in her wildest dreams, did she anticipate her son's tragic death.
  • The singer and actress said she has left everything in the hands of God.

When Mary Wangare Gioche populary known as KarehB in the music scene, got her first born son 17 years ago, she says she was elated.

"The bundle of joy that I named Joseph Mwadulo brought into me fulfillment of a desire...made me feel wholesome as a woman and I knew my life had taken a new leaf of being called a mother," she says.

Never in her wildest dreams, did she anticipate that her son would be plucked from the world of the living, through a violent road crash-far away from home.

“I am devastated. The anguish in me knows no boundaries. But I will hold on. I will accept the will of God. But it is hard to forgive, for the death of my son was as a result of dereliction of duty,” she said.

She says her son who was schooling at Chavakali Boys High School - met his death after the institution dispatched him among others, for the April holiday.

“The school administration informed us via the WhatsApp platform that the students would come aboard an Easy Coach bus. I was not comfortable with the students being released at 11pm. But there was consensus among parents,” she says.

KarehB narrates that she developed an eerie feeling that she could not define, that kept her awake past midnight on the fateful Monday.

She says she was online and at some point past midnight, saw a post about an accident but scrolled past it.


Mugithi musician Mary Wangare Gioche populary known as KarehB lost her 17-year-old son Joseph Mwadulo a student at Chavakali Boys High School in a road crash on Kisumu-Kakamega highway that occurred on April 2 as they were traveling home for the holidays. 

Photo credit: Pool

“Like many other Kenyans, I had grown distressed and fed up by the surging deaths through road carnage,” she says.

But it was in the morning around 6am when the school's WhatsApp platform started getting heavy traffic of messages inquiring about an accident involving Chavakali students.

“I got alarmed and apprehensive at the same time. I could feel that all was not well. By 8am all students should have announced their arrival to their respective homes. Mine had not made contact,” she says.

KarehB says she made “desperate calls of inquiry and one teacher told me that all those who had survived the accident had been given phones to contact their families.”

She says that disclosure was the start of her nightmare: “It left me so agonised as relatives and friends started calling me to inquire about the safety of my son.”

And the school management finally called at around noon to announce the sad news that her son was no more, that his body was lying at the Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Referral Hospital mortuary.

“My Joseph...an obedient son who loved life. Ambitious…where his passion was to become a pilot... A basketball enthusiast who said his role model was Michael Jordan...he is no more. The emptiness and hollowness of it all,” she said.

KarehB who introduced herself as a Mugiithi enthusiast, singer, vocal coach, stage and film actress said she leaves everything in the hands of God.

The late Joseph has been eulogised by friends and family. Kelvin Mwangi, 21, the deceased's cousin and friend says, "we are devastated as his circle of confidants."

He adds: “He was the perfect optimist that lived among us. He entertained no thought of negativity in life. A peacemaker and an Arsenal English Premier League team addict who kept on declaring to us that the life could only get better in the future.”

“He kept reminding us on how he would become a pilot, build her mother a big musical studio and employ for her an international manager to coordinate her shows...become a family man,” Mr Mwangi says.

KarehB says: “There is no compensation that can make my heart feel at peace, it is only the grace of God that will be sufficient for me".