Keeping the dream alive!

Most of the 54 people who attended the Terry Fox Run Sept. 15 in McLennan gathered for a group photo before the run.

Chris Clegg
South Peace News

It is now 38 years and counting!

Since the first Terry Fox Run in 1981, Francis Lessard has been involved in one way or another in helping realize Fox’s dream: to find a cure for cancer.

“The fact is he really hit a chord with Canada and with me,” says Lessard before the walk at McLennan Sept. 15.

“He did it [his Marathon of Hope by running across Canada] for all the right reasons. He was looking to help where he could.”

Fox, an amputee, attempted to run across Canada to raise money for cancer research but his trip was halted near Thunder Bay. Along the way, he inspired millions of Canadians and left a lasting legacy.

“It’s too bad he never got to finish,” says Lessard, adding he, like everyone, knows friends and people who have died from the disease.

So for almost four decades Lessard has taken part, usually manning the station while others completed the walk. Earlier in the day, he was busy putting up signs all over McLennan and earlier, in Falher.

The Garant family was one of many to take part. They estimate it is their seventh year.

“I did the Terry Fox Run when I was young,” says Tara Lea, who brought along her children Simon, 13, Brenna, 11, and Hannah, 9.

The run is especially important for Evelyne Lefebvre, of Girouxville.

“I had cancer,” says the cancer survivor.

She was a school teacher and remembered the school taking part in previous years.

Her friend, Edna Boisvert, also of Girouxville, came to support her.

Simon Eriki works in High Prairie but lives in McLennan.

“I want to support the run and the community,” he says.

“And soak up the last days of summer.”

Unlike most, it was Eriki’s first Terry Fox Run.

This year’s run attracted 54 participants who raised $1,770.

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