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2017 Terry Fox Run draws thousands of participants across B.C.

Thousands across B.C. took part in the Terry Fox Run on Sunday to raise funds for cancer research. Global News

Communities across B.C. took part in the 37th annual Terry Fox Run, a nationwide fundraiser that raises millions of dollars for cancer research.

B.C.’s Minister of Public Safety, Mike Farnworth, was among those who took part in the charity run on Sunday in Fox’s hometown of Port Coquitlam.

Large crowds were anticipated for the Terry Fox Run in Kelowna.

WATCH: Terry Fox Runs across Canada

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At only 18 years old, Terry Fox was diagnosed with osteogenic sarcoma, a type of bone cancer, and forced to have his right leg amputated above the knee.

Fox began his Marathon of Hope in April 1980. He planned to run across Canada, but on Sept. 1, after 143 days and 5,373 kilometres, Fox had to stop running outside of Thunder Bay, Ont., as the cancer had spread to his lungs.

He died less than a year later.

READ MORE: New Westminster woman shares letters from Terry Fox for the first time

Fox’s legacy lives on each September, when tens of thousands of Canadians take part in the Terry Fox Run across the country to raise funds for cancer research.

“People believe in Terry’s dream — they believe in the simplicity of what he started,” said Donna White, director of the Terry Fox Foundation BC Yukon.

“He didn’t do it for fame, he didn’t do it for fortune. He did it simply to bring an end to the hurting that he saw on the faces of the kids, especially those in the cancer ward when he was being treated,” she added.

“It’s a really amazing legacy that Terry has left when he passed that torch to all of us as Canadians and united us as a country 37 years ago.”

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—With files from John O’Dowd

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