December 11, 2009

Terry Fox Award to recognize courageous Olympic athlete: A new award in the name of Terry Fox has been created to honour the Olympic athlete from any country who displays the most courage, humility and extraordinary athletic ability at the 2010 Winter Games. VANOC CEO, John Furlong, said the Vancouver 2010 Terry Fox Award will be awarded at a public ceremony on the second-last day of the Games. He made the announcement next to a statue of Fox, the young man with a prosthetic leg who attempted to run across Canada nearly 30 years ago to raise money for cancer research. "Few people have touched the soul of this great nation like Terry Fox did on his Marathon of Hope in 1980". "This award will be presented to an athlete who embodies the same values that Terry Fox did''. In 1977, Terry Fox's right leg was amputated after he was diagnosed with bone cancer at the age of 18. Three years later on April 12, the young man from Port Coquitlam, B.C., dipped his artificial foot in the Atlantic Ocean off St. John's, and began his run west toward home, covering about 42 kilometres (marathon distance) each day, in freezing rain, high winds and sometimes snow. On Sept. 1, after 143 days and 5,373 kilometres, he was forced to stop running near Thunder Bay, Ont., after the cancer spread to his lungs. His story inspired Canadians to donate $24 million to his run, surpassing his fundraising goals. Since that time, nearly $500 million for cancer research has been raised by the Terry Fox Foundation, which continues to hold the annual Terry Fox runs across Canada in his name.

posted by tommytrump to olympics at 05:49 PM - 4 comments

I think this is a great way to honour Terry Fox and include his legacy in the Olympics. There has been talk about his mother or family lighting the torch, but I think this award is a better way to honour his memory. Someone else (living) is better for lighting the torch, in my opinion.

posted by Spitztengle at 07:16 PM on December 11, 2009

The way I read it, it's only for the 2010 games.

The award should become a part of the Olympics, moving forward.

posted by tommybiden at 07:56 PM on December 11, 2009

As touching as it would be for all Canadians, I don't think they will (or should) have a permanent award in Terry Fox's honour. The only awards the Olympics hand out are medals, and Fox never participated or was associated with the Olympics. This is a very appropriate gesture by Vanoc but should remain a special part of the Vancouver games.

posted by geneparmesan at 10:42 PM on December 11, 2009

Fox never participated or was associated with the Olympics

True enough, but I'm wondering if we might want to revisit exactly what the "Olympic spirit" really is all about. By this, I also mean that we think about that spirit under one flag ... not nationally assigned ones. If Terry Fox is only symbolic or inspiring to Canadians then we've got a real problem on our hands.

posted by Spitztengle at 03:22 AM on December 12, 2009

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