“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.” ~Terry Fox
Thirty years ago this week, Terry Fox began his Marathon of Hope. It started in St. John’s Newfoundland on April 12, 1980 with minimal attention, but enthusiasm for his quest quickly grew along with the miles he ran to raise awareness and funds for cancer research.
Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba and raised in Port Coquitlam, British Columbia, Terry was 18 years old when he was diagnosed with bone cancer. While recovering in hospital from the amputation of his right leg, it was the suffering of the other patients – many of them children – that made him so determined to do something about it.
Terry ran an average of 42 km (26 miles) a day for 143 days, until the cancer that had spread to his lungs forced him to quit on September 1st, 1980. While he was disappointed in not being able to continue, he had succeeded in running 5,373 km (3,339 miles) across six provinces and winning a permanent place in the hearts of Canadians. Less than a year later, on June 28th 1981, Terry died at the age of 22.
When he began the Marathon of Hope, his goal was $1 for every Canadian – so at that time, $22 million. But since then, almost $500 million has been raised worldwide for cancer research in his name. There is no doubt that Terry Fox, the boy who believed in miracles, has become the hero who continues to inspire everyone who knows his story.
For more information: http://www.terryfox.org/