On Sunday, Sept. 18, the first Terry Fox Runs in Langley since the pandemic raised more than $25,000.
Langley City run beat its $5,000 target, with 127 participants and 52 volunteers raising $19,683, a record for the Langley city run.
Preliminary figures posted to the Terry Fox Foundation website show the Walnut Grove run raised $5,340 toward a $7,000 goal, and Aldergrove — which remained a virtual event owing to a lack of volunteers — had raised $430 toward a $2,000 objective. Donations were still being tallied, and those figures were expected to rise.
A few participants were wearing red shirts rather than the white Terry Fox t-shirts, a sign that they were cancer survivors like Neil Bos, a Langley City resident who raised the most of any individual participant, $1,800.
He explained that he was diagnosed with stage 2 skin cancer eight years ago.
“I had a couple surgeries for that,” Bos recalled.
“They were worried it might spread into my body [but] thankfully it never did. That’s why I’m here today, running.”
“Terry Fox has long been an inspiration of mine and more often than not when I’m out running his voice and no quit attitude replays in my mind,” Bos added.
“The way you think can change the way you live and just like Terry, I always try to live in such a way that I can inspire others to be inspired.”
Another first-timer, Mike Willemsen, spoke for one of the largest teams of runners, 13 friends and family members, all there to support his sister who has been fighting cancer for 20 years.
“[She’s] still battling through it, which is why we’re here today,” Willemsen told the Langley Advance Times.
His advice to anyone considering taking part?
“Just go do it. It’s a good cause. It’s [cancer] going to involve everyone eventually, I think.”
So far, the Terry Fox runs across Canada have raised $850 million for cancer research in the name of the marathon of hope hero whose 1980 journey was interrupted when the disease that claimed his leg returned.
Before his death on June 28, 1981, Terry had achieved his goal of raising $1 for every Canadian.
More pictures from the Langley City event can be viewed online at the Langley Advance Times Facebook page.
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