The Terry Fox Foundation Donor Story

Creating a Vision of Hope for the Next Generation

Andrea Tang
Manager, Philanthropic Relations
The Terry Fox Foundation

We all have a story to tell and a legacy to leave. Although we have different dreams and aspirations, most of us want to know that we’ve made a meaningful impact in some way.

He is the ultimate example that we can continue to make a difference long after we are gone.

In 1980, 21-year-old Terry Fox dipped his artificial leg in the Atlantic Ocean with the dream of raising a million dollars for cancer research. Humble but determined, Terry wanted to make a difference in the lives of cancer patients. On April 26th, 1980 – Day 15 of his Marathon of Hope and 337 miles in at South Brook Junction – Terry wrote:  

Today we got up at 4:00 am. As usual, it was tough. If I died, I would die happy because I was doing what I wanted to do. How many people could say that? I went out and did fifteen push-ups in the road and took off. I want to set an example that will never be forgotten.”

After 143 days and 3,339 miles, Terry was forced to stop running outside of Thunder Bay. Before returning to BC for treatment Terry said, “I’m going to do my very best. I’ll fight. I promise I won’t give up.”

Determined to take himself to the limit for his cause he set out on an improbable journey. Terry’s legacy is one of hope and courage. He is the ultimate example that we can continue to make a difference long after we are gone. That one person can make a difference. What will your legacy be? What do you want to leave the world with after you are gone?

Today we got up at 4:00 am. As usual it was tough. If I died, I would die happy because I was doing what I wanted to do. How many people could say that? I went out and did fifteen push-ups in the road and took off. I want to set an example that will never be forgotten.

Everyone wants to leave a legacy, something they will be remembered for. While many people don’t think of themselves as having the means to make a difference, a gift through a will often allows individuals to leave a larger gift than would be possible in their lifetime. Today, cancer outcomes are better than ever, but there’s still a ways to go. Leaving a gift in your will is a powerful, generous, and surprisingly simple act to create a vision of hope for the next generation. A legacy gift is a gift with lasting meaning. How do you want to change the future?

Terry Fox Foundation