Terry’s Dream lives on in Kneehill County

Terry Fox Sawyer

The 40th Anniversary of Terry Fox’s Marathon Of Hope “An Astounding” Year For Acme Run!

Despite an economic downturn and a virtual run event due to a pandemic, the Acme Community Run Site #AB1022 had one of the highest fundraising years in 32 years as an official run location. With just three years ranking higher in fundraising revenue, run organizers and the Calgary Terry Fox office are calling Acme’s 2020 event, pulling in $5120 from 48 participants, “impressive!”

On April 30th the Terry Fox Foundation announced its decision to go with a virtual run event in order to ensure the safety and well-being of supporters from coast-to-coast. The theme for the 2020 Run: “One Day. Your Way,” encouraged participants to register online either as individuals or with a team of others. Then, on Sunday, September 20th, all those who registered were invited to choose their own time and route to run, walk, bike, ride, hike, roll, or stroll.

The Acme Community Run Site saw participants register from every corner of Kneehill County and beyond. Many participants no longer live in the area, but have strong ties to family and friends here. Some people chose to spend the day hiking in the mountains, others saddled up horses for a ride through the beautiful Kneehill countryside. Some laced up their sneakers and set off to break personal records for speed and distance, while others enjoyed a leisurely stroll around a neighborhood block holding hands with their kids. No matter the method, the motivation was the same – to honour the dream of a courageous, compassionate, determined young man whose own journey was abruptly halted by cancer, a disease which, at that time, very little was known.

While many people commented that the local gathering for the run was very much missed, the desire to keep the event alive despite physical distancing was incredible. Locals shared their individual experiences with one another via social media, text messages, phone calls, emails, and even letters in the mail. In some areas, neighbours set up driveway water stations with hand sanitizer, snacks, and water bottles. Although nothing can beat an in-person community gathering to build camaraderie, it was still fun to interact in different ways to create a shared common experience in support of a cause so close to our hearts.

Today, through the incredible accomplishments of cancer research, the odds are drastically improved. Terry made it ok to talk about cancer, and inspired a whole nation to lead the world in cancer research. To date, the Acme Community Run has raised over $85,780 for the Terry Fox Foundation in support of cancer research.