I often find mine on my runs. On many of those runs I have the advantage of passing what must be one of the most inspiring points one could imagine.
The Terry Fox memorial statue at Mile 0 on the Trans Canada Highway, Victoria BC. It’s a humbling but also encouraging reminder.
Terry Fox, of course, never got to this Mile 0. At age 21, after having one leg amputated due to cancer, he began training and completed a marathon in Prince George, BC.
Then came the run that would define him, define persistence, define cancer fundraising for decades to come. He started at the other Mile 0 of the Trans Canada, some 8,000 km (5,000 miles) east in St. John’s Newfoundland. The Marathon of Hope covered a marathon distance every day from April through September 1.
As inspiring, in a different way, is the story of Betty Fox, Terry’s mother. If he represented bull-headed youthful energy, she was the equally determined force who nurtured his legacy and turned his one-time heroism into a decades long accomplishment.
She might not have wanted it but I often think there should be some Betty Fox statues alongside the many Terry Fox statues across our great northern nation. She ended every speech with, “Never, ever, give up on your dreams.”
She was a mother whose son was taken by cancer but she saw something bigger and more important than her own loss. She saw the opportunity, the hope.
I stopped the other day to breathe in a little of that Fox family courage. I wasn’t attempting anything heroic. It was just another run.
From the statue, I ran up to the lookout on the south edge of Beacon Hill Park, gazed across the Strait of Juan de Fuca toward the Olympic Mountains in Washington State, then headed back down to the waterfront trail.
It was an easy run, running past dog walkers, elderly couples out for a stroll, visitors admiring the vistas.
A run fueled by gratitude.
Photos By Lorne Daniel – All Rights Reserved