Years ago, when BC Place Stadium was being built and the people in charge were considering what to call it, there was a strong lobby to name it after a young fellow who had recently failed in his attempt to run all the way from the Atlantic Ocean in Newfoundland to the Pacific in B.C. The powers that be discarded the suggestion. They felt that the young man who lost his battle to cancer not long
after he was forced to truncate his trek across Canada would soon be forgotten, and it would leave everyone puzzled as to why anyone had bothered to name such an important edifice after "some Terry Fox kid."
Leave aside the backwards logic of that decision - we name buildings and places to remember the people we honour, not to add prestige to a building - the one-legged runner who brought all of Canada to tears when he was forced to abort his Marathon of Hope at Thunder Bay, near the halfway point of his quest, remains a household name throughout Canada and beyond.
In fact, Terry Fox's goal - initially to raise a million dollars, later upgraded to $24 million (one dollar for every Canadian at the time) for cancer research - has been shattered many times over. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been raised through annual Terry Fox Runs, simple fundraising events by which runners, walkers, and strollers honour a young man whose courage and determination has inspired millions of people in at least 60 countries around the world.
On Sunday, Terry Fox's marathon continues, with walk/runs slated for Langley City (start from the Douglas Park band shell at 10 a.m.) and Walnut Grove (start 9 a.m. at the community centre parking lot, 8889 Walnut Grove Drive). Bikes, wheelchairs, strollers, and roller blades are welcome at both events, as are dogs on leash.
Terry Fox's real goal - to overcome cancer - has not yet been realized.
But we're running towards it!
@ Copyright 2013