Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Fox Run volunteers step up for big success

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AFTER coming close to being cancelled, the 33rd Terry Fox Run in Winnipeg went off without a hitch and drew more participants than expected.

The sun shone on the 1,100 participants who gathered for the event in Assiniboine Park Sunday morning that raised more than $58,000 for cancer research.

Earlier this year, the local Terry Fox office said if no volunteer organizers stepped up, the run would have to be cancelled.

Virgin Radio 103.1 morning show host Ace Burpee and James Follette answered the call and co-organized the annual run to raise money for the Terry Fox Foundation.

"They did a fantastic job," foundation spokeswoman Tammy Ferrante said Sunday night.

Burpee is well-known for his efforts raising awareness for a variety of charitable causes, so having his name associated with the run is a coup for the foundation. Follette is a fitness co-ordinator for 17 Wing and, like Burpee, has experience putting together such events.

They were responsible for recruiting committee members, facilitating committee planning meetings, setting and confirming the run route, seeking refreshment donations, promoting the run and overseeing run-day activities. The time commitment was estimated at two to four hours weekly during the months leading up to the run, the local Terry Fox office said in a release earlier.

The run went ahead, with more than the 1,000 participants organizers hoped to attract.

The Winnipeg-born Fox lost a leg to cancer before starting his Marathon of Hope across Canada to raise money for research. After running 5,374 kilometres in 143 days in 1980 from St. John's, N.L., to Thunder Bay, he had to stop.

He died in 1981. The first Terry Fox Run was held Sept. 13, 1981.

Today, the Terry Fox Foundation says it is responsible for supporting close to $20 million in discovery-based research each year in Canada. Terry Fox runs are held in communities throughout Manitoba and Canada as well as around the world.

-- staff

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition September 16, 2013 A4

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