Life often takes unexpected turns, and thats the case for Richard Kioko Kiundi, his journey from being a successful accountant to a street vendor.
Hailing from Makueni County, Kioko initially embarked on his career in the civil service, serving in various roles.
However, his life took a transformative turn when he received a life-changing job offer.
While enjoying a drink at a local establishment, he met an individual who presented him with an opportunity that would quadruple his salary.
At the time, he was earning approximately KSh 4,500, and he boldly quoted KSh 18,000.
Little did he know that this moment would set the course for the rest of his life.
The offer led him to the offices of Toyota Kenya at the Nyayo Stadium roundabout, where he began his journey with the company.
Kioko quickly ascended through the ranks and was eventually promoted to the position of Operations Manager. His career was on an upward trajectory, and with the increased income, he embraced a lavish lifestyle.
Kioko’s financial success allowed him to purchase an impressive house, own three cars, and provide his four children with access to prestigious schools.
Life was comfortable, and the future seemed bright.
The year 2013 marked the beginning of a series of challenges that would test Kioko’s strength and determination.
He received the news that he had suffered a mild stroke and was admitted to a High Dependency Unit (HDU) for treatment.
While he was treated and later discharged, his health struggles were far from over. A few months later, he received a diagnosis that would change his life—a cancerous tumor in his stomach.
The stomach cancer diagnosis was a heavy blow, and Kioko was forced to resign from his job to focus on his health and treatment.
The cancer battle was not only physically taxing but also financially draining. With medical expenses mounting and no stable income, Kioko’s financial situation began to deteriorate rapidly.
Desperate to cover his medical costs and ongoing treatment, he resorted to selling his own company. The loss of income and the growing medical bills led to insurmountable debts, and Kioko found himself in a dire financial predicament.
He decided to document his life’s journey, from the height of his success to his most trying moments. He wrote a book titled “Through the Wilderness of Life,” in which he shared the invaluable life lessons he had learned.
The book features photographs from his travels around the world during his prosperous days and encounters with prominent individuals.
Through his writing, Kioko hoped to inspire others and convey the message that even in the face of adversity, one can find strength and purpose.
Today, Richard Kioko Kiundi may not enjoy the wealth he once had, but he has found fulfillment in selling his book on the streets of Kenya.