Samwel Mushai Kimani was born 26 December, 1989 and lost his sight at age nine after an illness.
In 2003 he enrolled at St. Francis School for the Blind in West Pokot County where he met fellow Kenyan visually impaired Para athlete Joseph Lomong. He recalled thinking his world and sporting dream had ended when he turned blind but Joseph told him becoming blind wasn’t the end of the world and encouraged him to take up Para athletics. His fellow school friends were runners who impressed on him the benefits of training. HeI started training with them until he made it.
The visually impaired athlete took on both the 1,500m and 5,000m T11 at Rio 2016 – and returned home to Kenya with two gold medals.
He had previously won 1,500m T11 silver at Beijing 2008, which he improved to gold four years later at the London Paralympic Games in a world record 3:58:37, but achieving the double in Rio really set him apart from his rivals.
Kimani maintained his grip over T11 distance running with two more gold medals at the London 2017 World Championships in 1,500m and 5,000m. Samwel Kimani qualified for the Men’s 1500m & 5000m T11 for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics.