Running For The Cure

George Maratos is excited to be organizing the Terry Fox Run, which will take place Sept. 18, and hopes to see an increase in the numbers of participants this year.

It’s one of my favourite days of the year,” Maratos said, adding that he is happy to be able to host Yukon’s Terry Fox Run this year. “Having the in-person event, once again, is fantastic. Not only does it provide the opportunity to raise more funds, it brings the community together in a special way. To have the city come together to honour Terry, and honour a loved one facing cancer, is remarkable.”

Maratos took over the organization back in 2008. He said that Terry Fox is his personal hero. “Terry Fox is the greatest athlete Canada has ever seen. His story is one easy to be inspired by. His sacrifice and determination, his courage and commitment to the cause—it motivates me personally and is so inspiring.”

Two weeks ago, Yukoners ran in the Klondike Road Relay. “It was cold, it was dark, it was hard. This was Terry’s every day.” Maratos points out that Terry Fox would get up in the early morning, with it still dark outside, and he would proceed to run his marathon. He did this every day for 143 days in a row. “Think about that,” said Maratos, who is fascinated by Terry Fox’s discipline.

“This is a kid with a prosthetic leg, running a marathon a day. He raised millions of dollars and didn’t keep a cent. He even had to borrow money from his mom so that he could buy her a Christmas present. That says it all about Terry. It’s a great event to help organize.”

George Maratos has never had cancer, but that doesn’t keep him from organizing the run. He hopes that as many people as possible will participate. Typically, the Whitehorse event sees approximately 200 participants. “Some years there have been more,” Maratos said.

Maratos emphasized that the event is not competitive and for a good cause. “The Terry Fox Run is not a timed event; every participant is a winner. Those taking part are invited to not just run—they can walk or ride, too,” he said. Some participants are using skateboards. It’s also a family event.

“Seventy-nine cents of every dollar raised are going directly to the cause.” The money will be donated to cancer research. Since 2008, the Whitehorse run has raised $150,000.

Registration for the event will start at noon, at Rotary Peace Park, with the run beginning at 1 p.m. This year there will be about 12 volunteers assisting with the event, Maratos said. “Cancer is a terrible disease. It affects so many people.

“This run helps—not only raises money but helps people heal. Coming together to honour a friend or a family member affected by cancer. That is what the run does. It really is a special day every year.” 

The Terry Fox Run takes place annually on the third Sunday in September. This year’s run will be on Sept. 18, beginning at Rotary Peace Park and following the Millennium Trail.

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