The Terry Fox Run may return to Lake country after a six year hiatus.
The call is out for volunteers, particularly a run organizer, to help put on a the first Terry Fox Run in Lake country since 2010, just in time to celebrate the 37th anniversary of the run during Canada’s 150th anniversary.
“We believe Canada’s 150th anniversary is a great time to re-establish the Terry Fox Run in Lake Country and carry on Terry’s legacy,” said Donna White, provincial director of the the Terry Fox Foundation B.C. and Yukon.
“It would be such a shame for the people of Lake Country to miss out on an opportunity to keep Terry’s legacy alive, as every community, no matter how big or small, can make a huge impact.”
The run takes place in small and large communities across the country— and in several spots around the world—each September. The run has helped raise more than $750 million to aid cancer research in Terry Fox’s name since it started.
Fox, the young B.C. runner who lost a leg to cancer before deciding to run across the country to raise money and awareness about the disease, was stopped 3,339 miles in on a lonely stretch of the Trans-Canada Highway near Thunder Bay, Ontario in 1980. The cancer that claimed his leg had returned and spread to his lungs.
Fox had started his run with little fanfare in St. John’s, Newfoundland 143 days earlier and had run the equivalent of a marathon each day to that point. He had hoped to raise $1 million and make it back to B.C. to dip his artificial leg in the waters off Vancouver’s Stanley Park.
Despite little notice when it started, Fox’s run picked up attention as it crossed Ontario and by the time he was forced to stop running, Fox was well known across the country and donations were pouring in.
But he was forced to abort his “Marathon of Hope,” and flew back to B.C. for more cancer treatments. After a 10-month battle with the disease, Fox died.
His cross-Canada run, which he hoped would raise $1 million, ended up raising $23.4 million.
But his spirit lived on.
That spirit prompted the annual run in his name that continues to this day.
While other Central Okanagan communities have held annual Terry Fox Runs in recent years, a lack of volunteers has meant no run has taken place in Lake Country since 2010. The provincial Terry Fox Foundation wants to revive the run in Lake Country this year and is issuing the call for a run organizer and volunteers.
And in doing so, White quoted Fox, who famously said, “I’m not a dreamer, and I’m not saying this will initiate any kind of definitive answer or cure to cancer, but I believe in miracles. I have to.”
This year, the annual Terry Fox Run will go Sept. 17.
Anyone interested in stepping forward to help organize a Lake Country run is asked to contact Donna White, provincial director The Terry Fox Foundation, BC and Yukon at 1-888-836-9786 or by email at: Donna.firstname.lastname@example.org.