Monday, June 29, 2020 – It is 11 months since Bob Collymore, the former Safaricom CEO, succumbed to cancer.
Mr. Collymore died on Monday, July 1, 2019, at his home after a long battle with blood cancer and was cremated at Kariakor Crematorium the following day.
His widow, Wambui, has opened up on life without Bob and revealed how she has been coping.
In an interview with Sunday Nation, Wambui revealed that she has been losing her sense of smell since her husband died.
“I lost my sense of smell. It returned a few months ago and then disappeared again. It’s back again; so it goes and comes,”
“In grief, any number of things can happen. You can lose your sense of memory; your eyesight can be blurred. Grief is a chemical reaction in your body and it has a chemical effect on your senses, and so, for me, it was my sense of smell – which was an indicator of the magnitude of the trauma of death,” she added.
She also revealed that Bob was cremated a day after his passing in strict adherence to his will and his ashes deposited into the sea in Diani.
“He had chosen a strictly simple exit. And he did not just say it; he committed to it in writing. Think of it as an instruction manual written to be ticked off when you die.
“Some of the details were in that document, which he signed over through a lawyer. He used to say, ‘I don’t want to hang about. It’s like I’m done; don’t keep me around’.
“He (Collymore) scripted all of it. …except what outfit he would be cremated in, and that was my choice. And I chose to put his body in a Mudi suit, which is a white linen suit with flowers on the front of it. And he was barefoot, with no jewellery; none of those other possessions. Just him, in his purest form,” she said.
“Bob’s ashes were deposited into the sea in Diani. Diani was his favourite beach in the whole world, so we thought it best to put his ashes in the sea there; so that no matter where any of us, his family or friends, are in the world, as long as you are near or out at sea, then you are in the presence of where his remains are,” she said.
During Bob’s memorial, Uhuru revealed that Collymore had asked him to take care of his widow after his death and Wambui said the President has honored the request.
“I would say that Uhuru has been very supportive. And he has been supportive not as a President but as a friend of Bob’s. I am appreciative of the fact that he has been there with my family and I’m grateful for the fact that he was a good friend of Bob’s,” she said.
She also heaped praise on Bob’s popular boy’s club comprising of Joshua Oigara (KCB CEO), Jeff Koinange (Journalist), Peter Kenneth (Politician), Aly-Khan Sachu (Stock market trader), and Bharat Thakrar (Scangroup CEO) for always checking on her.
“They have been very supportive. They have checked on me constantly. I feel like I’m part of a family with the boys’ club,” she said.
Wambui and the late Collymore exchanged their vows in a private wedding in April 2016 and always kept their love life under wraps.
During Collymore’s memorial service, Wambui told guests not to wear black outfits as is the norm since she wanted his life celebrated not mourned.
The Kenyan DAILY POST.