The 36th annual Terry Fox Run will hold special meaning for longtime participants Carol Roy and her daughter Chantelle.
Last year Mike Roy – husband and father – died of lung cancer.
“I truly think it’s been 25 years that Mike and I did it,” Carol said. “He passed away last year from lung cancer, so it means even more. He was a fireman. Very sudden. Like five weeks is all we had.”
Carol and Mike participated in the run for about 25 years and in the last few years manned a water station at the runs.
Chantelle, a Grade 1-2 teacher at Georgia Avenue Community School, has participated in the runs for at least 20 years and her golden retriever Tucker will join her for his 11th run, which will actually be a two-kilometre walk because of his advancing years.
“He would run the 5K, but then his muscles will not recover and he’ll be lame for three days, but he would do it,” Chantelle said.
This year’s run starts from the Kin Pool in Bowen Park Sunday (Sept. 18) at 10 a.m. Registration, which is free, starts at 9 a.m. Pledge forms can be picked up at most city recreation facilities.
Participants can choose to run, walk or wheel around a two-kilometre course that circles Bowen West Field or the five-kilometre circuit that continues around Buttertubs Marsh.
The run commemorates Terry Fox’s 1980 Marathon of Hope when he attempted to run across Canada to raise awareness and money to fight cancer. Fox’s goal was to have every Canadian donate one dollar. To date, the Terry Fox Foundation has raised about $650 million worldwide in Fox’s name.
About 350 Nanaimo participants raised $25,000 last year, plus local schools hold events around the time of the community run that raise cash and awareness among students about a proud moment in Canadian history.
Chantelle, who was a young girl when Fox attempted to run across Canada, teaches her students about Fox.
“As a teacher, I do it at my school as well and I really believe in teaching students the value of giving back and doing something that maybe people think is impossible, but still trying it anyway,” Chantelle said. “That’s just a really good message for them.”
Fore more information, to donate or register, please visit the Nanaimo Terry Fox Run event website at http://bit.ly/2ccQjLT.