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

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

Castlegar doctor Megan Taylor contracted COVID-19 in November. This photo was taken before the pandemic. Photo: Submitted
MY COVID STORY: From doctor to patient

Castlegar doctor shares her COVID experience

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson)
30 new COVID-19 cases, five more deaths in Interior Health

This brings the total number of cases to 7,271 since testing began

(From left to right) Twin Meadows Animal Rescue co-directors Puneet Grewal and Nycki Wannamaker with Stick & Stone manager Meaghan Collins, and Stick & Stone owner SJ Nelson. Pictured here with Blue, Hombre, Daphne,Skye and Freedom. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)
‘Rescue starts from the moment they come through the doors’: TMARS co-founder

Puneet Grewal of Elkford co-founded TMARS in 2020, and with the help of a small army of volunteers and fosters has helped dozens of animals find homes

(Pixabay)
B.C. ranks as fourth most attractive Canadian jurisdiction for resources companies

B.C. was ahead of neighbouring Alberta, which was ranked as the seventh-best Canadian jurisdiction

Castlegar’s Gabrielle Herle (right) will be one of the speakers at the conference. She is seen here with Wendy Gaskill from Chinook Scaffolding accepting their Contractor of the Year Award in 2019 from the Builders Code Champion Awards. Photo: Submitted
Girls in STEAM and Leadership Conference offered free for all girls in the Kootenay Boundary

Virtual conference for girls in grades 8 to 12 will be taking place on March 8

Dr. Bonnie Henry talk about the next steps in B.C.'s COVID-19 Immunization Plan during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, January 22, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
456 new COVID-19 cases in B.C., 2 deaths

Since January 2020, 78,278 have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in B.C.

“Support your city” reads a piece of graffiti outside the Ministry of Finance office. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
Slew of anti-bylaw graffiti ‘unacceptable’ says Victoria mayor, police

Downtown businesses, bylaw office and Ministry of Finance vandalized Wednesday morning

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Vaccinating essential workers before seniors in B.C. could save lives: experts

A new study says the switch could also save up to $230 million in provincial health-care costs

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The late Michael Gregory, 57, is accused of sexually exploiting six junior high students between 1999 and 2005. (Pixabay)
Former Alberta teacher accused of sexually assaulting students found dead in B.C.

Mounties say Michael Gregory’s death has been deemed ‘non-suspicious’

According to a new poll, a majority of Canadians want to see illicit drugs decriminalized. (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Majority of Canadians think it’s high time to decriminalize illicit drugs: poll

More than two-times the B.C. residents know someone who died from an overdose compared to rest of Canada

Interior Health officially declared a COVID-19 outbreak at Creekside Landing in Vernon on Jan. 3, which was followed by the first death from the virus 10 days later. (Kaigo photo)
COVID outbreak over at Vernon care home

Creekside Landing cleared of coronavirus, despite additional death in last day

Photograph By @KAYLAXANDERSON
VIDEO: Lynx grabs lunch in Kamloops

A lynx surprises a group of ducks and picks one off for lunch

Most Read