PETER MARTIN was 23 and just starting his first full-time gig at the Oakville
Journal Record 40 kilometres west of Toronto when he photographed the solitude of Terry Fox’s early-morning run. This resulted in the iconic image on our cover, taken in Oakville at 5 a.m. on July
13, 1980. It won a Canadian Newspaper Award for feature photography and was chosen as a historic image that changed the country in 2008 by Canada’s National History Society. A print hangs in hockey superstar Sidney Crosby’s hallway (“The Long Run,” pg. 46).
Martin didn’t know what he had until he developed the film. “There were probably about 12 frames of that particular sequence,” he says. “Most of them were out of focus, and it was just that one shot, that one frame.” Martin liked it because it was different, but his managing editor thought it was too dark, so Martin sent it to the United Press Canada wire service, and the picture shot around the world.
After a career as photographer for newspapers in Edmonton, Montreal and Washington, D.C., Martin estimates he has been on 10,000 assignments over 40 years. He splits his time between Annapolis, Md., and Stow-on-the-Wold, England, where he runs the Peter Martin Gallery. —