Participation up in Marathon of Hope
Thirty-three participants from the Conception Bay North area walked or ran around the half-kilometre track at St. Francis Field in Harbour Grace on Sunday, Sept. 18, taking part in the 31st annual Marathon of Hope.
They helped raise approximately $1,600 for cancer research in memory of the late Terry Fox, who started it all 31 years ago with his inaugural Marathon of Hope.
Maureen Robinson, who helped organize the event, was pleased to see the number of participants was actually up from the 27 who took part last year.
Robinson said two of the regular participants were out of the province on the day of the event, “ but they still sent in their pledge sheets, and did their walks remotely.” Reg O’Neill of Harbour Grace, who has been involved in the event since its inception, did his walk in Ontario, while 11year-old Mitchell Murphy did his walk while on a Florida vacation with his parents, Blair and Tina Murphy of Harbour Grace.
“ Half of this year’s participants were newcomers to the event,” Robinson observed.
Harbour Grace deputy mayor Terry Barnes was on hand to welcome participants, on behalf of the town.
Calling the Terry Fox Run a “ fall tradition in Canada,” Barnes told the group, “ it is people like yourselves that keep this Marathon of Hope alive.”
Robinson acknowledged the town for its support in purchasing t-shirts for run participants.
She noted that 85 per cent of all funds raised from the events go towards cancer research, some of which is taking place close to home at Memorial University in St. John’s.
“Cancer survivors are living proof that cancer research is working to develop new drugs and treatment methods,” Robinson said.
Harbour Grace was one of 35 sites around the province, and the only one in the Trinity Conception region where a Marathon of Hope event took place Sept. 18.
Heather Strong, provincial director for the Terry Fox Run said, “ things went remarkably well right across the province. With over 70 per cent of Newfoundland and Labrador sites reporting, early reports indicated the number of participants and money raised are both averaging higher than last year.”
“ It looks like the momentum from ( last year’s) 30th anniversary has carried over to this year, and it also looks like people chose to run as their expression of tribute to Terry’s mom, the late Betty Fox, who died on June 17 of this year.”
Even before this year’s event, the Terry Fox Foundation had already raised more than half a billion dollars worldwide for cancer research.