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The unknown facts about Obama's mother

Victor Wachira
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Ann Dunham holding her young son Barack Hussein Obama [Photo/AP]

As Kenyans and most importantly the K'ogelo village prepares for the second coming of their most adorable son, Barack Hussein Obama, many, however, would only identify him with his father.

Not much information is known about his mother who in fact played a key role in the upbringing of the 44th president of the United States of America.

Stanley Ann Dunham, his mother, was born on November 29,1942, and was given the male name 'Stanley' because her parents had yearned for a boy instead of a girl.

In the second edition of his memoir 'Dreams From My Father', Obama acknowledged her mother as the best as manifested in him, "What is best in me, I owe to her," he acknowledged.

In a separate interview published by Chicago Tribune, Obama referred to his mother as "the dominant figure in my formative years ... The values she taught me continue to be my touchstone when it comes to how I go about the world of politics."

Born in Wichita, Kansas, Dunham spent her childhood life in California, Oklahoma, Texas, and Kansas before moving with her family to Hawaii, where she met with Barack Obama Sr. then aged 23 in a Russian language class at the University of Hawaii.

On February 2, 1961, Dunham and Obama Sr. married on the Hawaiian island of Maui.

On August 4, 1961, aged 18, Dunham gave birth to her first child, Barack Obama II.

In January 1964, Dunham filed for divorce to which Obama Sr. never contested.

She attained  Bachelor of Arts degree in anthropology from the University of Hawaii in 1967, Masters in 1974 and Ph.D. in 1992 both in anthropology.

She died on November 7, 1995, after suffering from uterine cancer.

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-Victor Wachira

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