Sunday, February 16, 2014

THE MARATHON OF HOPE








Pic.: Vincent D'Souza
I first heard about Terry Fox in Richard Leider’s inspirational book – ‘The Power of Purpose’. Leider had used the story of young Terry Fox – who had run his legendary ‘Marathon of Hope’ across Canada to raise 23-million dollars, i.e., one dollar for each Canadian at that point of time.

Terry loved sports immensely. But, as a young boy, he was diagnosed with cancer, which had left his one leg amputated. The anguish, pain and anger of seeing people dying of cancer, and with a burning desire to help raise funds to support medical research in cancer, young Terry resolved to embark upon the greatest mission of his life – ‘The Marathon of Hope’.

I was in my mid twenties when I read Terry’s gutsy story: How one could find meaning, purpose and means even in the most hopeless situations in life, if he possessed in his heart a dream bigger than his miseries… and pursue it with all the compassion, commitment and perseverance in his soul. Terry’s story inspires us never to give up on our dreams… to transcend our pain and sorrow into something bigger, nobler and sublime… The story is the classic example of the famous words of Gandhi: “Find your purpose… and, means will just follow.”

Terry Fox had run 5,373 kilometers in 143 days across Canada and not only touched lives of people in Canada, but also all over the world. Along his dream run, the cancer had spread to his lungs and before he could complete the Marathon, Terry had succumbed to cancer… He was barely a month away from his 23rd birthday!

Terry’s legacy is not just 23-million dollars to Canadian Cancer Society, it is the legacy of hope in the face of the direst and the darkest situations in our lives… “Don’t give up on Life… Don’t give up your dreams!”

Today, here in Mumbai, about ten-thousand school-children would be running, what now has become a global annual-event known as - ‘Terry Fox Run’. Terry Fox Foundation has been continuing with the dream Terry had dreamt. So far, it has been able to raise more than 600-million dollars for the noble cause, which, the young-boy had given his life for…

I revisit the story of Terry each time I get terrified by my own miseries, fears and self-doubts. And, yes, I keep urging others too visit his story… and, come out charged…

If our dreams are blessed with fine intentions, for Terry’s sake, let’s follow them all the way… That’s the Marathon of Hope, I think, he wanted all of us to run…

Let’s not give up on Life… Let’s not give up our dreams…

GERALD D’CUNA


2 comments:

Usman said...

Yes, I too had first read this Terry Fox story in Richard Leider's book; inspiring. Thanx for bring it back again. --- Usman

Varun Shenoy said...

A true hero - Terry Fox!
= Varun Shenoy