Darrell Fox reflects on the dedication and perseverance that his brother Terry Fox embodied
The 2020 book Forever Terry: A Legacy in Letters commemorates the 40th anniversary of Terry Fox's Marathon of Hope.
Edited by Terry Fox's younger brother Darrell Fox, Forever Terry features 40 letters by 40 prominent Canadians reflecting on Terry Fox's life and legacy as an athlete, humanitarian and cancer research activist.
In this 2008 interview, Darrell Fox spoke with Shelagh Rogers about his brother's determination and resolve to run during his mentally and physically gruelling Marathon of Hope.
A powerful memory
"I've been asked, 'What was my most powerful memory?' That memory is seeing Terry cowered in his sleeping bag after we woke up at 4:30 in the morning. Terry had finished running the night before, and he would hide in that sleeping bag, almost trying to disappear, trying to avoid what was going to happen that day.
Terry had finished running the night before, and he would hide in that sleeping bag, almost trying to disappear, trying to avoid what was going to happen that day.
"Doug Alward, Terry's best friend, would be driving the vehicle, so I'd be beside him in the passenger seat. Even though there was absolute silence in the complete darkness, you could just cut the tension.
"You realized the stress that Terry was going through. He knew that another day lay ahead for him and that he was going to have to run another marathon of 42 kilometres. Even after we reached that point where Terry had to start his run, we almost had to push him out the door."
"There was that feeling of guilt for me and I'm sure for Doug as well, knowing that we were warm and being protected inside that van and Terry was out there having to go through it again.
As much as I longed at five o'clock to get some more rest, I just couldn't do that based on what Terry was doing outside.
"It's a feeling and guilt that I've had for 28 years. I never went back to sleep.
"As much as I longed at five o'clock to get some more rest, I just couldn't do that based on what Terry was doing outside."
Darrell Fox's comments have been edited for length and clarity.