“The night before my amputation, my former basketball coach brought me a magazine with an article on an amputee who ran in the New York Marathon. It was then I decided to meet this new challenge head on and not only overcome my disability, but conquer it in such a way that I could never look back and say it disabled me.”
These are the words of Terry Fox in his letter requesting support for his Marathon of Hope.
The Terry Fox Run is coming back on September 18 in order to raise funds to fight cancer and keep Fox’s legacy alive.
Terry Fox was an avid athlete when he crashed into a pickup truck. His only complaint was pain in his right knee and he chose to ignore it. A couple months later the pain returned to his knee but because of basketball season, Fox postponed a doctor’s appointment. When the pain became unbearable, Fox went to the hospital and was diagnosed with osteosarcoma.
Fox’s right leg was amputated and he began chemotherapy. He was told that he had a 50 percent chance to survive the disease. During the 16 months of treatment, Fox focused not only on his battle but those of the cancer patients around him.
“There were faces with brave smiles and the ones who had given up smiling. There were feelings of hopeful denial and the feelings of despair.”
This was when Fox decided he had to fight not only for himself, but all cancer patients.
In 1980, Terry Fox began the Marathon of Hope. Beginning in Newfoundland, Fox planned to run across Canada and finish in British Columbia.
Along the way, he would raise funds to fight cancer and speak to Canadians across the country affected by the disease.
After 143 days and 5,373 kilometers, Fox was forced to stop his run in Ontario, his cancer had returned. Fox passed away June 28, 1981.
The Terry Fox Run was created in order to keep Fox’s dream alive. The run, which can also be walked, biked or rollerbladed, has been held in Golden since 1986. Nola Dusevic, current co-ordinator, has been in charge of the event for about 15 years.
“I saw Terry one hour before he had to stop outside Thunder Bay, Ontario. That has stuck with me, I had never seen someone so willing to put his own life on the line in order to help millions of others,” Dusevic said.
The run takes place September 18 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. It begins at the Mount 7 Rec Plex and donations can be made during this time. For more information, contact Dusevic at 250-344-2857 or 250-344-2928. “Even if I don’t finish, we need others to continue. It’s got to keep going without me.” – Terry Fox.