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

Snow could be seen Oct. 12 on Highway 5, near the Coquihalla summit. (Contributed)
It looks like an interesting winter folks

Winter will be colder than normal, with above-normal precipitation and below-normal snowfall

Paramedics transported a cyclist to hospital after he collided with a vehicle outside the Wendy’s at Penticton Plaza Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2020 (Jesse Day - Western News)
Truck collides with cyclist outside Penticton Wendy’s

Police are investigating the collision

Riders of all ages participated in 2019’s Axel Mercx Granfondo in Penticton, with over 1600 registering for 2020 before COVID-19 forced its cancellation. (Western News File)
Granfondo ‘Penticton’s best opportunity for an event in 2021’

The long-distance cycling event was cancelled this year after 1600 riders had already registered

Join the discussion with Boundary Similkameen candidates. (Photo submitted)
Boundary Similkameen candidates to debate health care tonight

Everyone is welcome to join the online event

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

A 20-year-old man was pronounced dead following a three vehicle collision on Highway 1 west of Revelstoke Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2020. (File photo)
One dead after Highway 1 crash near Revelstoke

20-year-old man pronounced dead at the scene of a three vehicle collision west of Revelstoke

Steven Stuart Gardner has been charged with possession of a firearm contrary to an order and possession of a firearm without a licence. He has also been charged, under the Motor Vehicle Act, with driving while prohibited. (Crime Stoppers photo)
Car connected to shooting, dumped in Chase leads to unrelated arrest

Investigation of Kamloops shooting leads police to a rural Chase property

Volunteer registered nurse Stephanie Hamilton recieves a swab from a driver as she works at a Covid-19 testing site in the parking lot at Everett Memorial Stadium on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2020 in Everett, Washington. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
13 more COVID-19 cases in Interior Health region

There are 624 cases in the region since the start of the pandemic

The body of Natsumi Kogawa, 30, was found in the Gabriola Mansion on Davie Street, Vancouver, in September 2016. Vernon man William Schneider, who was found guilty of second-degree murder, now awaits the decision of his appeal hearing Monday, Oct. 19, 2020. (Vancouver Police Department photo)
No decision yet for Vernon man appealing murder sentence

William Victor Schneider was convicted in relation to Natsumi Kogawa’s death in 2016

Vernon once again boasts the lowest gas prices in B.C. Oct. 20, 2020. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
North Okanagan boasts lowest gas prices in B.C.

Gas going up, and down, in Vernon specifically

This 2020 electron microscope image made available by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases shows a Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 particle isolated from a patient, in a laboratory in Fort Detrick, Md. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-NIAID/NIH via AP
At least 49 cases of COVID-19 linked to wedding in Calgary: Alberta Health

McMillan says the city of Calgary has recently seen several outbreaks linked to social gatherings

École de L’Anse-au-sable. (Google Maps)
COVID-19 confirmed at Kelowna Francophone school

École de L’Anse-au-sable is not affiliated with local SD23

Vernon North Okanagan RCMP received footage of a suspect vehicle littering hate flyers around 21st Avenue in Vernon Oct. 17, 2020. (RCMP)
WATCH: Footage offers lead in hate-fuelled flyer probe: Vernon Mounties

Vernon police received footage of an older model green truck distributing flyers in the early morning hours Saturday

Most Read