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Kenya’s entertainment industry was dealt a big blow after actress Maende Shikuku passed away on Friday, November 4.

Lucia Shikuku, the elder sister of the late Maende, has revealed exclusively to eDaily that the actress passed on after a cardiac arrest.

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Lucia eulogises her sister as one of the most sociable persons she has ever known.

“She was my best friend. I don’t even know how I will live without her,” said Lucia as she proceeds to reveal her last conversation with her sister: “We were planning to take our kids to Mombasa for the holidays.

“I had asked her to come over on Wednesday (November 2) to help me do a project but she told me she’d send someone,” recounted Lucia.

That person never came.

She (Lucia) called her back on Thursday but Maende’s phone was not going through. Lucia thought that her late sister was on rehearsals as she had just gotten a new job with Mnet in the upcoming programme Kookoo.

On Friday (November 4) a colleague of Maende’s called Lucia to inform her that she had taken ill on set and was rushed to hospital.

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Lucia dropped everything and rushed to hospital, only for her to be informed that Maende Shikuku had passed on.

“Maende had so many friends. I think she should just have run for MCA,” Lucia recounted.

“Everyone called me. Bodaboda operators, mama mboga, watchmen, even mortuary attendants asked how they could be of help,” she said.

Lucia extolled her sister over how she touched people’s lives: “One thing she taught me is to always be there for people. You never know what could happen,” said Lucia.

The family will be holding a fund-raising on Wednesday, November 9 at 4pm at the Kenya National Theatre before proceeding for mass on Friday, November 11, at the Holy Cross Church along Amboseli road.

The late Maende is survived by two children (girls) and will be buried on Saturday, November 12, at their Kiminini home, Trans-Nzoia County.

Shikuku was best known for her role in NTV series Pray and Prey, in which she played the character Petronilah – a devoted Christian.

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