The fact Terry Fox remains a Canadian hero to current generations of Canadians 38 years following his tragic death is a testament to the courage and determination Fox showed on his Marathon of Hope, says Kevin Harvey, the organizer of the Penticton Terry Fox Run.
This year’s Penticton Terry Fox Run takes place on Sunday, Sept. 16, starting at the SS Sicamous on Lakeshore Drive.
It remains hard to believe it has been 38 years since Fox had to cut his Marathon of Hope short after running halfway across the world’s second-largest nation on one good leg and one prosthetic leg, said Harvey.
“What needs to be said about Terry?” he asked rhetorically. “In his teens, he was touched by the young people he saw in hospital suffering from cancer and then it happened to him.
“He was just a youngster himself when he embarked on the Marathon of Hope and it still gives me goosebumps every time I think about it.”
The fact Fox managed to run the equivalent of more than 26 miles per day for six months on one leg still astounds him, said Harvey.
There were about 100 participants at last year’s event and he’s hoping for increased participation this year, said Harvey.
“It was a fun atmosphere last year with lots of families, people with their dogs, kids on bikes,” he said. “It’s a fun, family event and we’re hoping for more of the same this year.”
The run begins at 10 a.m. and participants will follow the Penticton Channel. There will be marked turnarounds at the one kilometre, two kilometre and five kilometre distances.
Participants can gather pledges from friends, family members and co-workers or can simply make a donation during registration, said Harvey.
Registration opens at 9 a.m. There will be refreshments and snacks at the start and finish line.
This is the second year Harvey has organized the Penticton event after he answered a newspaper advertisement.
“I thought it would be a shame if nobody showed up, so I threw my hat in the ring so to speak,” said Harvey.
All proceeds go to the Terry Fox Foundation, which has raised hundreds of millions of dollars as Terry Fox Runs are now held in dozens of countries around the world.
To read more about Fox’s Marathon of Hope and the Terry Fox Foundation, click here.