Even as physical-distancing continues to be a recommended measure amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and smoke from out-of-control wildfires south of the border fill the air above the city, plans for the Terry Fox Run slated to take place this weekend remain on track.
But things will look decidedly different this year.
In 2020, the Terry Fox Run will be done virtually.
“The foundation has put it out there to say, ‘One day. Your way,’” said Andrea McCurrach, who is the local organizer for Sunday’s run alongside her husband, Richard. “That’s their slogan.”
The messaging is simple enough. Get out there and support the cause, but do it safely, in whatever that means to you, whether that’s running solo, walking on a treadmill, or finding some other process in the midst of these unprecedented times.
According to McCurrach, some are planning to rise early in the morning to do their own virtual run at 4:30 a.m., the time of day that Terry Fox was known to most enjoy running.
Participants are asked to register at terryfox.org and donate what they can towards the cause because, as McCurrach pointed out, cancer and cancer research don’t come to a stop just because there’s a pandemic.
But she also realizes that things can be particularly challenging for people in 2020.
“We really just want people to participate,” she said.
The Terry Fox Run is an annual event that honours Canadian Terry Fox and his Marathon of Hope while encouraging Canadians to raise money for cancer research.
Fox lost his right leg to cancer at age 18 and in 1980 began his run across Canada to raise money for cancer research. Unfortunately, his cancer returned and he was unable to complete the journey, but he raised $24 million before having to end the cross-country trek.
In the years since then, the Terry Fox Run has raised more than $800 million for cancer research.