Man inspired by Terry Fox recreates journey

By Vanessa Ybarra
October 26, 2017 - 5:18pm Updated: October 27, 2017 - 4:28pm

KAMLOOPS — While Terry Fox's 'Marathon of Hope' raised millions of dollars for cancer research, it also inspired those living and recovering from cancer to make a difference.

For Guy Amalfitano, Fox's story hits particularly close to home.

In the early 1980s the France native was diagnosed with the same cancer as Fox.

He says it was the late runner who inspired him to continue to move forward and begin a journey he calls the 'The Crossing of Hope.'

Guy Amalfitano grew up playing soccer in his home country of France.

At the age of 17 the avid athlete was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer, and had to have his right leg amptuated.

It was while receiving chemotherapy that the young man's devastation turned into determination.

"I questioned me when I lost my leg" said Amalfitano. "When I saw Terry on the TV I said 'oh it's possible to do such things. He's my hero."

Terry Fox's cross-country Marathon of Hope ended in 1980 after succumbing to the same cancer as Amalfitano.

This past spring, the 53-year-old hit the pavement to finish what Fox started.

"I am here to thank him," said Amalfitano. "Every day I run 45 kilometres and now I am running 6,600 kilometres."

Amalfitano left St. John's Newfounland in May, the same starting point for Fox's 'Marathon of Hope', completing a marathon a day himself.

Amalfitano and his friend Jean-Michel travelled through Kamloops Thursday and will end their 'Crossing of Hope' in Vancouver in early November.

So far he's raised close to $10-thousand for the Canadian Cancer Society.

"People have been happy to see what I do and they give with their heart."

Amalfitano completed two similar cancer-fundraising journeys in France, with the city worker also competing in the Paralympic Games in Calgary in 1988.

Like Fox, his hope is that more people walk in his footsteps to eventually find a cure.

 

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