This year’s Terry Fox Run easily broke last year’s record, raising $930 more than the previous year.
With 31 participants this year, the Sylvan Lake Terry Fox Run brought in $2,170, up 75 per cent from 2016.
Scott McDermott, the organizer for the Sylvan Lake run said he was hoping for a turnout of between 20 and 30 people.
“There have been years where the volunteers outnumber the participants. It’s always hard to tell how many are going to turn out, it is dependant on so many things,” McDermott said.
The Terry Fox Foundation is a major investor to cancer research. The foundation directed $26.6 million to research projects in 2015-16.
The money from the Terry Fox Foundation is used for discovery research, translational research and to train future leaders in cancer research.
According to McDermott, what makes the Terry Fox Foundation special is how much money actually goes towards cancer research.
“The Terry Fox Foundation has an administrative cost of only 14 per cent. That means when you donate to them you know your money is actually going towards something good, not someones pocket,” McDermott explained.
“I really don’t think these CEOs need a half-a-million dollar salary or to be driving Ferraris.”
When participating in a Terry Fox Run, the runners to do not receive gifts like t-shirts, hats or stickers. This is part of the way administrative costs are kept low.
Those who are interested can purchase such items, but they aren’t handed out at any run.
“It an easy, non-competitive run that anyone can take part in, and it really goes to a good cause,” said McDermott.
McDermott, who has participated in many charity runs, says the Terry Fox Run is special, because of all it has done to advance cancer research.
One statistic says if Terry Fox had been diagnosed with the same cancer today, he wouldn’t have lost his leg and he would have had a 99 per cent chance of survival.
“We have come a long way since 1980, but there is still more that can be done. Nearly everyone here has been affected by cancer in someway, and that is just too high,” said McDermott.
Because cancer is wide reaching it is important to make sure there are people researching for a cure, a prevention something to make it better, McDermott says.
McDermott has a friend who is going through treatment, and believes there has to be a better way then chemotherapy and radiation.
“We have come ahead leaps and bounds but there is still more to do and learn,” he said.
McDermott remembers watching Terry Fox make his run across the country in 1980. He remembers seeing the prosthetic “that was mean to look real in pants.”
Terry Fox is an inspiration to many, for those with a disability, those fighting cancer and those who look at him and see a man who thought anything was possible.
“He said he was going to run across country, even though he was told he couldn’t that his leg wasn’t made for it. He did, and it was amazing to see his determination,” said McDermott.
The world has come a long way since the 80s, in cancer research and for amputees.
Today there are special prosthetics made specifically for running.