Race Review: Terry Fox Run 2015 – To Support Cancer Research

Yesterday morning, the Terry Fox Run took place in Singapore, at East Coast Park. Comprising of two categories – a 5km and a 10km Fun Run, this charity race helped to raise awareness and funds for cancer research.

Runners are eager to start the race.

Eager runners waiting at the starting line.

The Terry Fox Run, which is held in more than 60 countries around the world, also honours Canadian amputee runner Terrance “Terry” Fox, who was diagnosed with bone cancer in 1977. And three years later, in April 1980, Fox had attempted to run the entire length of Canada – to raise awareness for cancer research. He lasted 143 days and 5,373 kilometres before succumbing to his cancer, which had returned with a vengeance – spreading even to his lungs.

Fox’s selfless act has made this run the worlds largest one-day fundraiser for cancer research.

Runners had fun at the event

Many runners definitely had fun yesterday at the run, such as 43-year-old Leigh Parker, a teacher and homemaker. She said, “I enjoyed today’s run very much. We had really lovely weather and quite cloudy, and a bit of breeze from the sea as well, so it wasn’t so hot. In fact, I even did a second loop – to look for and bring some other runners back to the carnival area!”

Delicious ice-cold milo awaits the finishers at the end point.

Delicious ice-cold Milo awaits the finishers at the end point.

Supporting cancer research is important

At the same time, Parker believes that supporting cancer research is very important. She explained, “Having lost some friends through cancer, this is something that is very close to my heart, and that of many other people too. So we should all believe in and try to help people with cancer and those who are involved with taking care of the patients. Events like this definitely help to raise awareness of cancer research and I think the Terry Fox Run is a big event globally, that really brings this issue to the forefront.”

45-year-old IT director, Jason Cone, who was participating in the run together with his family of four, also agrees that doing your part to help with cancer research is very important. At the same time, he also added that it felt good to see that so many runners were out there in full force yesterday morning, to support this cause. Some of his colleagues as well as his students at the Singapore American School have been stricken with cancer over the years, so he feels very strongly about supporting cancer research.

Runners lounging around and catching up with each other, after completing their run.

Runners catching up with each other, after completing their run.

Nice to see the cancer survivors being flagged off before everyone else

Added Steve Wise, a 47-year-old management consultant, “Also, it was very nice to see the cancer survivors being flagged off at the beginning of the race, before the rest of the runners. It was an inspiration for everyone and makes me think that if they can do it, then so can I.”

Indeed, one of the cancer survivors taking part in the event was 65-year-old retiree Thomas Lee, who had been diagnosed with colon cancer in 2008. Explained Lee on his own experience with cancer, “When I was told that I had cancer back then, my mind went blank and all I could see was the doctor’s mouth moving and nothing was registering in my head. But I have a strong and positive mindset and I was determined to pull through. My family and friends also helped me when times got hard.”

“So running events like today’s are definitely meaningful and helps to raise awareness for cancer sufferers, to let them know that they are not alone in their ordeal,” Lee added.

Raising the spirits of cancer patients and public awareness of cancer research

Besides regularly turning up at events such as the Terry Fox Run to raise awareness of the importance of cancer research, Lee, who is also a volunteer with the Ostomy Association of Singapore (OAS) and the Singapore Cancer Society, goes to hospital wards at the Singapore General Hospital regularly to encourage the cancer patients there and raise their spirits when they are feeling down and alone.

Ginger cookies are available at the finishing line for the runners to replenish their energy.

Ginger cookies available at the finishing line for the runners to replenish their energy.

Explained Lee, “It feels really good when I am able to convey and deliver what I want to share with them as I have been through such an experience myself.”

Lee wants to brighten up the lives and mood of cancer patients in Singapore – and this is what keeps him going. As well, he also aims to continue his efforts in raising awareness of cancer support groups, such as the OAS and the Singapore Cancer Society – at events such as the Terry Fox Run.

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