Nfld. & Labrador

Clarke's Beach boy chooses a different kind of superhero costume: Terry Fox

When Ethan Smallwood goes door to door on Halloween next week he'll be asking for donations for cancer research, not candy.

Ethan Smallwood will fundraise on Halloween in honour of his hero Terry Fox

Ethan Smallwood was inspired to dress up as Terry Fox for Halloween after learning about him at school. (Candice Smallwood/Facebook)

In 1980, Terry Fox dipped his leg into the St. John's harbour and began his Marathon of Hope. Now nearly 40 years later, a young boy from Clarke's Beach plans to trick or treat and raise money dressed as Fox, who he says is his hero.

Ethan Smallwood learned about Terry Fox when his school was getting ready for this year's Terry Fox Run, and said he was inspired to do something of his own to help with cancer research.

"It was Terry Fox Day at my school and it just got me curious," said Ethan, 7.

He decided to dress up as Terry Fox for Halloween and to ask for donations for cancer research through the Terry Fox Foundation instead of candy as he goes door to door.

He told his mother about the idea when he got home from school, Ethan said, and she helped him make his costume, including drawing Fox's artificial leg on a pair of pants.

He's hoping to raise at least $1,000 through his trick-or-treating efforts. As of Friday afternoon, he had surpassed that goal online and raised $1,250.

A Canadian comic book

Ethan is a fan of superheroes he was wearing Iron Man pyjamas on Friday for another fundraiser, Pajamarama — and says he hopes to dress up as comic book writer Stan Lee for Halloween next year.

He has already drawn comic books of his own, including one about Fox.

Ethan is forgoing candy on Halloween this year, and is instead raising money for the Terry Fox Foundation. (CBC)

The boy considers Terry Fox's accomplishment of running from St. John's to Thunder Bay, Ont., before his cancer returned and forced him to end the Marathon of Hope, as just as worthy as anything done by someone wearing a cape.

"He's like one of the only superheroes on the planet, I think."

He hopes to add to his fundraising total on Thursday night, and said that going without Halloween candy this year won't be too bad.

"Mom eats it all anyway."

Read more from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador

With files from Cecil Haire


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.