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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Tuesday, September 30, 2003

3-time marathon champion dead at 33

Advertiser Staff

Benson Masya is one of four three-time Honolulu Marathon champions.

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Three-time Honolulu Marathon champion Benson Masya of Kenya died last week at 33, according to Honolulu Marathon spokesman Pat Bigold.

Bigold said he received the news from Mark Wetmore, agent for Cosmas Ndeti, who said he was with his close friend Masya when he died.

Ndeti, a three-time Boston Marathon champion, said Masya died Sept. 24.

No cause of death was given, but Masya reportedly had been ailing for some time, according to Bigold. Masya's funeral will be Saturday in Kitui, Kenya.

Masya competed in the Honolulu Marathon for the first time in 1991 as a 21-year-old postal clerk. He won that year, defended his title in 1992 and returned to win in 1994.

Masya is one of four three-time Honolulu Marathon champions. The others are Mbarak Hussein (1998, 2001, 2002), Ibrahim Hussein (1985, 1986, 1987) and Duncan Macdonald (1973, 1976, 1980).