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Terry Fox - A Canadian Hero (by Shelley Bearse)

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When people speak of heroes this brings war heroes, medical heroes, or even more popular, super heroes to mind. Not so when I think of a true modern day hero - Terry Fox.

Terry Fox, a young Canadian, at 18, lost his right leg to bone cancer. Terry was an athlete and wasn’t going to let this stop him. He had read about a one-legged runner who had completed the New York Marathon, which gave him his idea - to run across Canada to raise money and awareness for cancer research.

Terry contacted companies for sponsorship and started training for what is now called The Marathon of Hope. Just over three years after his amputation, Terry dipped his artificial leg into the waters of the East Coast of Canada to start his run across Canada.

I had the privilege of being in London, Ontario, when Terry ran through that town.

I remember the poignant pictures of Terry on the evening news - running into the darkness with the headlights of his support team’s van, lighting the way for him. Tragically, Terry didn’t get to complete his run - but his dream is carried on each year around the world by those who run in his memory. Terry’s selfless goal has inspired many people, and I want to praise this true modern day hero, and continue what he began.

2005 is the 25th year since Terry started his run and commemorative events are being held around the world. The Tokyo Run will be held on October the 2nd, 2005, in Hibiya Park, followed by a tribute to Terry - offered by many Canadians and admirers of Terry Fox, living in Tokyo.

Everyone is invited to get friends and family to sponsor you for the run or walk. You can run 5 or 10 kilometers or walk 5 kilometers.  All money raised is donated to the Terry Fox Foundation in Canada and to the Children’s Cancer Association of Japan.

The Four Seasons Hotel and Tokyo Canadian Club websites will have information outlining the run and extra events this year. Please check and for further details.