Marathon of Hope runner Terry Fox is shown in a 1981 file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/CP

‘Amazing legacy’: Terry Fox Run goes virtual for 40th anniversary of Marathon of Hope

Fred Fox said that even through the pandemic, people have reached out to see if they can participate

It’s been 40 years to the day that Terry Fox ended his Marathon of Hope in Thunder Bay. For his brother, Fred, it’s a day of reflection.

“Terry had started back on April 12, 1980, and made his way through the Maritime provinces, Quebec and stopped in Thunder Bay,” Fred told Black Press Media by phone Tuesday (Sept. 1).

Terry had ran 3,339 miles (5374 kilometres) in his journey, including 21 miles on that day, before acknowledging that he could no longer run; despite a leg amputation three years earlier, the cancer had returned and spread to his lungs. He died on June 28, 1981, at just 22 years old.

Fred said that every year on Sept. 1, the family is reminded of “the beginning of a wonderful, amazing legacy” that Terry left – one they weren’t always sure would last.

“In the early years, in early ’80s , our parents were told this is only going to last a few years,” he said. To date, the Terry Fox Foundation has raised more $800 million for cancer research, and the annual run is held in countries all over the world.

But this year, the run will look a little bit different. It will be held virtually on Sunday, Sept. 20, and has the option to track your run (or walk) through the MoveSpring app. Users can use the code TFF to register and join the Terry Fox Run challenge.

Fred said that while his family aims to celebrate Terry every year, they were heartened to hear the many questions about what would be happening with the run in 2020, even amid the pandemic.

“Even the last five months, with all of us dealing with COVID, people have said ‘what are we doing this September?’” Fred said.

“It’s so important to continue Terry’s dream and raise money for cancer research. As Terry said: even if I don’t finish, you’ve got to keep going without me.”

For cancer survivors and patients going through treatment, the run can be especially heartening this year. Both groups are at a higher risk for complications from COVID-19 but Fred said he’s heard that many of them will do the run in their own way.

“Many of them need to be careful in this COVID world… but they’re with their families and friends, in their bubble, getting out there.”

For his part, Fred said he and his family will take part in their own small run within their COVID-19 bubble. For Fred and his wife, who live in Maple Ridge, that means they will do the run with their three kids – and two special guests.

“I have two grand children and our youngest will be experiencing the Terry Fox Run for the first time.”

READ MORE: #FoxForFiver: Support grows in B.C. to put Terry Fox on new $5 bill

READ MORE: Abbotsford teenager doing Pedal of Hope with Terry Fox’s brother

READ MORE: ‘It’s amazing’: Fred Fox blown away as Terry Fox shoes, T-shirt sells out in minutes


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Terry Fox

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

File photo
EDITORIAL: The power of a single vote

In the Oct. 24 British Columbia election, every vote is important

Vernon’s Davison Orchards says it is closing its pumpkin patch for the rest of the season after receiving notice from Interior Health that U-Pick Fields are classified as an Event. Pumpkins are still for sale at the orchard’s market. (Facebook photo)
Vernon orchard closes pumpkin field after IH notice

Interior Health tells Davison Orchards U-pick fields are an ‘event;’ pumpkins now sold at market

Advance polling closes today at 8 p.m. in Vernon. Pictured: Schubert Centre. (Jennifer Smith - Vernon Morning Star)
B.C. VOTES 2020: Last day to cast early vote in Vernon

More than 15 per cent of eligible Vernon voters cast ballot in advance polling

RCMP stock photo (Black Press)
Kelowna RCMP investigating unexplained death of cattle

Cattle found dead near gravel road, east of the Kelowna Airport

Vernon Fire Rescue Services work to put out a structure fire in an abandoned house on Highway 97 and 39th Avenue Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020. (Caitlin Clow - Vernon Morning Star)
UPDATE: Vernon house fire under control

Single-lane traffic remains in effect on Highway 97 in both directions

FILE – People wait in line at a COVID-19 testing facility in Burnaby, B.C., on Thursday, August 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
167 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death recorded as B.C. enters 2nd wave

Three new healthcare outbreaks also announced

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The Community Foundation of the South Okanagan Similkameen is launching an initiative to provide horse-assisted therapy to frontline workers during the COVID-19 pandemic (Black Press file photo)
Community Foundation of South Okanagan Similkameen to provide horse-assisted therapy

Therapy sessions will be offered to frontline workers during ongoing COVID-19 pandemic

Brody Peterson said he intends to dispute tickets issued by Grand Forks RCMP at his backyard “house warming” Saturday, Oct. 10. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
Brody Peterson told The Gazette he intends to dispute tickets issued by Grand Forks RCMP at his backyard “house warming” Saturday, Oct. 10. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
‘This is a big outdoor space’: Grand Forks man behind backyard party to fight COVID tickets

Homeowner Brody Peterson said he’ll dispute tickets for refusing police instructions, alleged COVID violations

Paul Singla walks towards his Penticton home on Heather Road in 2018 after CBSA officers raided it. (File photo)
Singla and Toor make first court appearances on immigration fraud

The Okanagan men had their cases adjourned until 2021

A glimpse of some of the 480 (approx) cars written off as a result of the acid spills along the Trail highway in 2018. Photo: Trail Times
Kootenay Ford dealer’s frustration grows with ICBC

Trail AM Ford owner Dan Ashman says he just wants fair compensation from ICBC

Mail-in ballot from Elections BC (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)
At least 26% of eligible voters have already cast their ballot, Elections BC says

Voters can cast a ballot until 8 p.m PST on Election Day

A 2018 decision to fly a rainbow flag ended up costing the City of Langley $62,000 in legal fees (Langley Advance Times file)
Human rights win in rainbow flag fight cost B.C. city $62,000

“Lengthy and involved” process provoked by complaint

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a news conference Tuesday October 20, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau and his family decide against trick-or-treating this year due to COVID

Adhering to local health authorities, Trudeau urges Canadians to do their part in following those guidelines

Most Read