Retired Army-General John Koech died Sunday morning at a hospital in Nairobi, his family has said, without disclosing what he was suffering from.
"We are trying to come to terms with the loss. A statement will be issued later. A meeting is being held at the family's residence in Nairobi," said a family member who declined to speak on the record.
The family is also yet to reveal when the former Deputy Chief of General Staff was admitted and how long he had been sick.
General Koech was an astute businessman with interests in real estate in Nairobi, Nakuru and Kericho counties. He also owned a private tea factory in Bomet County.
He was a resident of Brooke on the outskirts of Kericho County.
General Koech unsuccessfully contested for the Ainamoi parliamentary and was a long-serving United Democratic Movement (UDM) party official.
The last public function he attended was the opening of Kericho Green Stadium mid this year.
Deputy President William Ruto eulogised General Koech as a "leader of character, a hero, a true patriot and a brave man in uniform who was dedicated to serving and defending our country."
The DP described him as quick-witted, strict but fair minded, progressive and vibrant.
[He] became a central figure in the transformation of our military. We will miss his wise counsel, vision and vigour to empower the people of Ainamoi," he said.
Kericho Governor Paul Chepkwony said General Koech was a dedicated, diligent and humble senior military officer.
Governor Chepkowny said the army official served in the regime of former President Daniel Moi with exceptional loyalty, commitment and trust.
"He was a model farmer who contributed immensely to the transformation of the tea and dairy industry. General Koech had footprints in almost all socio-economic facets of the society," he said.