About 1,500 people (and dogs) walked, ran and cycled 1.5-, five-, and nine-kilometre routes at the Terry Fox Run in Kelowna on Sunday.
"Prosthetic legs have come such a long way since Terry did his run in 1980-81," said Allan Blyt of Hager Orthopaedic Clinics at the 32nd annual Terry Fox Run at Kelowna's Mission Sports Fields.
"Terry used a simple $500 unit with a single axis knee with elastic strap and foam and plastic foot. It was really jerry-rigged. Today's $45,000 prosthetic has its own computer that adjusts the hydraulics constantly for seamless function. It's made of carbon fibre and graphite and the foot has return
Hager had a booth at the event and the steady stream of people that dropped by were fascinated by the advances in technology.
After losing a leg to cancer, Fox donned his primitive artificial limb to run across Canada with a very noticeable hop in his gait to raise money for the disease he was fighting.
He made it from the east coast to Thunder Bay, Ontario before he had to stop because of a cancer reoccurence that would claim his life.
But Fox's memory - and fundraising in his name - continues today with hundreds of annual runs around the world.
The Kelowna event on Sunday
attracted 1,500 to walk, run or cycle the 1.5 kilometre, five kilometre and nine kilometre routes.
That's about the same number as last year, but organizers hoped to bump the fundraising total up from last year's $96,000 to break the $100,000 mark.
"This event has incredible momentum. We have many of the same people come out year
after year," said Shane Worman, who organizes the local Terry Fox Run with his wife, Lisa.
"But we also want to get people out for the first time or people back that may have taken some years off. And it's great for fundraising and keeping Terry's name alive with kids."
Both Wormans are cancer survivors.
Members of the Mount Boucherie Bears high school football team were running in their jerseys for Bears alumni Josh Fender, 19, who is battling testicular cancer.
"I'm not on the team anymore because I graduated, but I played with Josh and that's why I wanted to be here today," said Alex van Nieuwkerk.
The UBC Okanagan Heat women's basketball team also ran as a group.
"We like doing everything we can for team bonding and being out in the community," said Olivia Johnson.
"This is supposed to be our day off from training, but we'll do a nice light run and do the 1.5 kilometre course twice."
The event was like a festival with people encouraged to come out early to enjoy the pre-run live music, kids activities and mingling.