With it being September, cities and towns across Canada will soon be celebrating the Terry Fox Run. With this in mind, we spoke to members of Taber’s own Terry Fox Committee — Wanda Renner, chair of the committee, and Collen Pack, member of the committee about this year’s run.
“After three years, due to COVID, the Terry Fox Foundation was having virtual runs. This year, they have every place that wants to have their own run again, so the Taber committee decided that it’s time,” said Renner. “We wanted to see the people and just feel the energy of the people of Taber. We’ve moved forward, so we’re excited about that, that we’re going to have one. It’s on Saturday, September 17 — registration is from 8 to 9 a.m. at the Taber Community Centre in the auditorium and then we are officially starting the run at nine. We encourage them that they don’t have to get pledges, but they can pledge for themselves or whatever they still desire. What we’re just gearing for is participation.”
Renner spoke about an alternate version of how to pledge money for the run and talked about the new Terry Fox quilt that was made.
“We have volunteers that will help register and take your money. Also, they can go online and register online,” said Renner. “Then kind of a special thing that we’re doing this year is complements of the Cotton Pickers Quilting Club. From the run, we are going to raise money then donate for their time, all the materials and everything to make that quilt, and then what we’re going to do is help raise money for Terry Fox Foundation. What we’re doing is we’re asking people if they would pledge $100 or more, and then they’ll get their name on a plaque that will sit beside (the quilt) at the Taber Public Library.”
Renner continued by discussing what will be happening to the old quilt that is currently at the library.
“The legacy is that we were probably one of the first committees that actually took all the T-shirts starting from 1990 to 2008, gathered all these T-shirts, and then the quilting club made this quilt which sits in the library now,” said Renner. “This quilt now has been donated to the Terry Fox Foundation and will be placed in a museum once the museum is created, and then what we are hoping is this next quilt, which is from 2009 to 2021, will eventually stay in our community and then eventually go to the Terry Fox Foundation. Taber is very generous, and I know the foundation has always said that for a community our size, the dollars that we raise is — they’re very surprised and we’re very proud that nearly every dollar is spent and donated to research. There’s not a lot of overhead — they’re very lean.”
Afterwards, Pack took a moment to discuss the importance of the Terry Fox Run and fundraising for cancer research.
“Everybody’s life has been touched by cancer — a loved one, friends, family — everyone has had someone close to them pass away from cancer, and Terry Fox kind of took that upon himself to raise money 42 years ago,” said Pack. “He wanted every Canadian to donate $1 so that everybody could raise all this money for cancer research, and our population has changed and grown, and there’s more need for money and research, but the spirit is still the same to raise money for cancer. If everybody does a little bit, then we can do great things together, and then try to get rid of cancer. The way to do it is to research and get all these clinical trials and different ways to do it. They’re working so hard at it, and so this is something we can do as a small community, as a single person, as an individual, we can do something about it. I want people to come and run in honour of those that have been affected, passed on, or are fighting it right now. It’s something we can do and our money helps.”
Renner spoke about what she has seen during her time as a member of the Taber Terry Fox Committee.
“I’ve participated, whether it’s being a part of the organizing committee for almost 30 years and I’ve seen strides,” said Renner. “I’ve seen where there were certain cancers that there was a ten per cent or even less per cent survival rate, but now with research and clinical studies, there’s a 90 per cent success rate in recovery. We’ve seen the strides in research is done. I’ve personally seen that, and then always how there’s just how something new, different kinds of cancers that are being diagnosed. That’s where I think it’s really important that we search defined how to deal with certain things or find a cure to.”
Finally, Renner took time to discuss how the event on Sept. 17 is open to everybody.
“We just want to ask everyone who is available or wants to come out and participate we’d love to see them,” said Renner. “There will be a little bit of food, snacks, and drinks available. They always call it a run but you can walk, run, skip, rollerblade, bike, stroller, wheelchair, whatever, all family, all pets — it’s pet friendly to just come out.”
If you would like any more information about the upcoming Terry Fox Run, you can call Renner at 403-331-9464.
Ian Croft, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Taber Times