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Terry Fox begins the Marathon of Hope

The night before his right leg was amputated, Terry Fox read about an amputee who ran the New York City Marathon. The article inspired Terry's Marathon of Hope, an incredible cross-Canada run on an artificial leg to raise money for cancer research. Terry was forced to end his run when his cancer returned. He died on June 28, 1981, but his legacy lives on in the annual Terry Fox Run.

April 12, 1980: Terry Fox dips his artificial leg into the Atlantic Ocean in St. John's, Newfoundland, and his Marathon of Hope begins.

A police escort and a small crowd witness the departure of Terry and his van, which carries eight pairs of running shoes, three extra legs and various spare parts. He hopes to reach the Pacific Ocean in five or six months.
• Terry's right leg was fitted with an artificial leg made of steel and fiberglass. He tried many different ways of running but was never able to use a normal gait, settling on an awkward double step and hop.

• On the first few days of his run, Terry was delighted to find people lining up to hand him donations of money as he ran by.

• After St. John's, Terry went through Gander and Port-Aux-Basques. Port-Aux-Basques raised $10,000 -- one dollar for every person in town.

• Other major events of 1980 include Canada's assistance to American hostages in Iran, the eruption of Mt. St. Helens and the deaths of John Lennon and Marshall McLuhan.

Medium: Television
Program: The National
Broadcast Date: April 12, 1980
Guest: Terry Fox
Reporter: John McQuaker
Duration: 1:30

Last updated: September 11, 2013

Page consulted on December 6, 2013

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