Marathon of Hope runner Terry Fox is shown in a 1981 file photo. The Terry Fox Research Institute has launched a new national network to bring together leading cancer hospitals and research universities across Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/CP

Marathon of Hope runner Terry Fox is shown in a 1981 file photo. The Terry Fox Research Institute has launched a new national network to bring together leading cancer hospitals and research universities across Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/CP

‘He would be so proud’: 40 years on, the legacy of Terry Fox’s Marathon of Hope lives on

Terry Fox started his run across Canada to raise money for cancer research on April 12, 1980

Early Sunday morning, Fred Fox, his daughter Kirsten, sister Judi and niece Jesse gathered at Terry Fox Secondary School in Port Coquitlam to mark a very special anniversary.

April 12, 2020, is the 40th year anniversary of the day when Terry Fox began his Marathon of Hope when he was just 21 years old. Fox, who grew up in B.C., was diagnosed with cancer at just 19 years old and had his right leg amputated.

Usually, Fred, Terry’s older brother, and others close to Terry, gather in Newfoundland where the Marathon of Hope began. This year, with COVID-19 restricting travel, the family gathered in Port Coquitlam just after 4 a.m.

“We do it in the morning because that’s when Terry would start every day,” Fred told Black Press Media by phone. “Get up at 4 a.m., be on the highway at 4:30 a.m. It was his favourite time of day to be running because he was alone in his thoughts.”

Fred said April 12 is always a day of reflection for him but is ultimately a happy day as the family remembers the Terry’s determined fight to make sure others fighting cancer would have hope for treatment and a cure.

“We’re celebrating. It’s a positive day.”

Although Terry Fox was forced to stop in Ontario, and didn’t make it to his ultimate goal of B.C., his dream lives on. Every year, millions of people take part in Terry Fox runs in their own communities in September.

“He could never have imagined that 40 years later here’s where his legacy and dream would be today. Terry would be so proud,” Fred said.

“He’s given people hope… there’s lots of help out there.”

A campaign to get Terry Fox on the new $5 is ongoing. The nomination period has ended but you can see the Bank of Canada’s process here: https://www.bankofcanada.ca/banknotes/banknoteable-5.

READ MORE: ‘If anybody could do it, he could,’ Terry Fox’s nurse to speak at B.C. run

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


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Terry Fox

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

Just Posted

The Smithers District Chamber of Commerce coveted Alpine Man Statue for winners of the 2020 Community and Business Awards Nov 25. (contributed photo)
Smithers Feed Store named Business of the Year

Chamber of Commerce Community and Business Awards handed out in virtual ceremony via Zoom

The Terrace River Kings lost 9-3 to the Quesnel Kangaroos on Mar. 2, 2019 in the final CIHL playoffs. (Lindsay Chung Photo)
Central Interior Hockey League cancels 2020/21 season

League open to playing exhibition games if possible

Questions around rail safety, firefighter safety, cleanup near the rail yards and tracks, whistle cessation, etc were raised during the RDBN meeting with CN. (File photo)
Regional district frustrated with CN response to grievances

‘A lot of our concerns are still not being heard,’: Houston mayor Shane Brienen

Skiers and snowboarders enjoy the fresh, fluffy snow at Fernie Alpine Resort.
Ski hill scheduled to open Dec. 4

Hudson Bay Mountain Resort will open without its usual contingent of international workers

Mary Cox and Jack Plant dance in their pyjamas and slippers at the morning pyjama dance during the Rhythm Reelers’ 25 Annual Rally in the Valley Square Dance Festival in Chilliwack on June 4, 2011. Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020 is Square Dancing Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Nov. 29 to Dec. 5

Square Dancing Day, Disability Day and International Ninja Day are all coming up this week

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

Kevin Bieksa during his days playing with the Vancouver Canucks. (Photo: commons.wikimedia.org)
Bieksa to guest on free Canucks Alumni ‘Hot Stove’ on Zoom app

Former NHL player has become a game analyst on Sportsnet

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

114 Canadians were appointed Nov. 27 to the Order of Canada. (Governor General of Canada photo)
Indigenous actor, author, elder, leaders appointed to Order of Canada

Outstanding achievement, community dedication and service recognized

More than 60 cm of snow has fallen at Ulkatcho First Nation near Anahim Lake in the Chilcotin since a snowfall warning went into effect Thursday, Nov. 26. (Graham West photo)
VIDEO: More than 60 cm of snowfall in Chilcotin since Thursday, Nov. 26

Graham West of Ulkatcho First Nation captures the scene on video

Screenshot of Pastor James Butler giving a sermon at Free Grace Baptist Church in Chilliwack on Nov. 22, 2020. The church has decided to continue in-person services despite a public health order banning worship services that was issued on Nov. 19, 2020. (YouTube)
2 Lower Mainland churches continue in-person services despite public health orders

Pastors say faith groups are unfairly targeted and that charter rights protect their decisions

A big job: Former forests minister Doug Donaldson stands before a 500-year-old Douglas fir in Saanich to announce preservation of some of B.C.’s oldest trees, July 2019. (B.C. government)
B.C. returning to ‘stand-alone’ forests, rural development ministry

Horgan says Gordon Campbell’s super-ministry doesn’t work

Peter Wilson, left, and Micah Rankin, right, formed the Special Prosecutor team that was tasked with reviewing and litigating charges stemming from the Bountiful investigation. Trevor Crawley photo.
End of Bountiful prosecution wraps up decades of legal battles

Constitutional questions had to be settled before a polygamy prosecution could move forward

Most Read