when i was a young man hitchhiking in northern BC in 1979,
the guy i was travelling with told me he had a friend with cancer, who was going to run across Canada with one leg.
i laughed in his face and called him a liar.
it was the most ridiculous thing i had ever heard.
i had just finished crossing Canada from Montreal to Vancouver by car and it had taken almost a week.
it would be impossible to walk that distance with two legs.
the guy swore he was telling me the truth.
i was insulted that someone would think me capable of swallowing that much bullsh!t.
i did not give it another thought.
the next year Terry Fox was all over the news.
In 1980, with one leg having been amputated, he embarked on a cross-Canada run to raise money and awareness for cancer research. Although his health eventually forced him to end his quest after 143 days and 5,373 kilometres (3,339 miles), his attempt resulted in a lasting legacy. The annual 'Marathon of Hope' Terry Fox Run, first held in 1981, now involves millions of participants internationally and has become the world's largest one-day fundraiser for cancer research.
in 1985 Stephen Fonyo, another one-legged Canadian cancer survivor completed what Terry Fox had begun. Fonyo began his "Journey for Lives" marathon at age 18, and completed it 14 months later, covering 7,924 km (4,924 mi) and raising $14 million.
one word... WOW!