Terry Fox fundraiser spans two decades

“The young Port Coquitlam man decided to journey across Canada after he was diagnosed with osteogenic sarcoma (bone cancer) in his right leg and had the leg amputated.”

November 23, 2014

I doubt if there is a journalist in Canada living today (along with many who have departed to the Big Newsroom in the Sky) who has not done a piece on Terry Fox and the run named in his honour. His life is a lesson to us all on how doing something soulfully meaningful can just keep on giving and giving and giving.

Multi-millions of dollars have gone to cancer research due to contributions made at numerous Terry Fox runs across this country and around the world for the past 34 years (and counting). I have heard that many forms of cancer now have a cure due to these funds. (On a personal note, I believe it was bone cancer that caused the death of my paternal grandmother, Laela Ateah Lester, in 1960.)

I believe it was in the same year that that I wrote the following article that my son, Luke and I, walked in the Terry Fox Run on Salt Spring Island, BC.

Here are excerpts from the article:

Gulf Islands Driftwood

August 30, 2000

Terry Fox fundraiser spans two decades

by Tanya Lester

The Terry Fox Run, set for Sunday, September 10 on Salt Spring, enters “20 years running” across Canada this year.

Run coordinator Paula Davies, who has organized the run for four years and participated for seven, remembers how inspired she was 20 years ago when she was among hundreds who saw Terry Fox arrive at Toronto City Hall.

She said that he has remained a hero in her life. Whenever Davies has been faced with life’s struggles, she has “in (her) mind remembered what he went through.” He represents “determination in times of trial” for her.

Davies added that she also has been touched by cancer diagnoses among family and friends.

The young Port Coquitlam man decided to journey across Canada after he was diagnosed with osteogenic sarcoma (bone cancer) in his right leg and had the leg amputated. Cancer reoccurrence cut his cross-country trek short in Thunder Bay, Ontario.

His motivation to launch the Marathon of Hope was to raise money for cancer research. Davies said that two decades later, money raised from the Terry Fox Run assists in a higher survival rate among those diagnosed with cancer.

On Salt Spring Island, the run at one time sponsored by the Gulf Islands Driftwood, started on Rainbow Road.

The run will begin and end this year, as it has for several, at Fernwood School…..

Participants will walk, run or cycle the seven-kilometer route to North End Road and then circle around to North Beach Road and back to Fernwood School. The scenic route includes a beautiful ocean view with Wallace and Galiano islands in the distance.

It takes about 20 minutes for cyclists to travel the route and 45 for runners. Walkers complete it in 90 minutes…

Davies notes that Terry Fox ran 26 miles a day when he was on on his Marathon of Hope….

The run now occurs in 52 countries around the world, including Australia, Kosovo, Ireland, India and Africa.

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