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‘The look on her face, I will never forget it’: Alberta father sheds pounds for daughter

Click to play video: 'Calgary father sheds pounds to help himself and countless others' Calgary father sheds pounds to help himself and countless others
A Calgary father has raised thousands of dollars for an organization supporting veterans and first responders. He's going to donate even more and he's doing it one dollar at a time. Jill Croteau reports. – Mar 19, 2021

A 45-year-old father’s decision to lose weight was inspired by his little girl, and now his journey is motivating others.

Two years ago, Dave Murphy weighed almost 400 lbs and was at the park with his then four-year-old daughter Chloe, when he decided to change his life.

“She said: ‘Let’s race home,’ and I said, ‘Sorry honey, dad can’t,'” Murphy recalls.

His fight to get fit caught the eye of Southpaw Boxing Gym.

The gym was inspired by Murphy’s story and offered free training to help him reach his goal.

So far, he’s lost roughly 160 lbs.

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“Looking back, I don’t even recognize that guy,” Murphy said.

Dave Murphy weighed 400 lbs (left) but lost 160 lbs (right) thanks to motivation from his daughter.
Dave Murphy weighed 400 lbs (left) but lost 160 lbs (right) thanks to motivation from his daughter. Dave Murphy/Submitted

Murphy said he doesn’t have a goal weight in mind, he just wants to keep active and stay alive for his family.

“I just want to keep running with her,” he said.

“That little smile on her face is worth every minute.”

Dave Murphy racing with his 6-year-old daughter, Chloe. Jill Croteau/Global News

Murphy survived a violent stabbing attack over two decades ago and credits paramedics for saving his life.

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“I had a punctured lung, lost half my muscle in my leg, 13 wounds in total. I was in rough shape,” Murphy said.

Being a father to Chloe has reminded him of the reason he feels he survived — not only the attack, but also the mental struggle he faced afterwards.

“There were a lot of years I had bad thoughts and wondered: ‘Why me? Why was I spared that night?’ There it is.”

 

A family selfie with Murphy’s wife, Kim and daughter, Chloe. Dave Murphy/Submitted

Murphy’s wife Kim is proud of his transformation.

“He’s doing more with (Chloe), takes her to the park all the time and plays with her. It’s great,” she said.

Murphy says his biggest cheerleader — and motivation before the weightloss — is his little girl, Chloe. Dave Murphy/Submitted

Murphy has already raised thousands for charity and decided to donate $1 for every lost pound to Can Praxis, a non-profit organization that helps veterans and first responders heal from PTSD.

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The founder of Can Praxis, Steve Critchley, says the group is grateful for Murphy’s passion and heart.

“To use the determination to get back on your own two feet and find a way to help yourself and others…

“It’s amazing, it’s wonderful, it’s humbling,” Critchley said.

Murphy is hoping others will join him and is challenging them to raise funds alongside him.

“It keeps me accountable,” Murphy said. “If you’re struggling out there, make that pledge and it will fire you up.”

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