Former Winnipegger and the father of iconic marathon runner Terry Fox has died.
Rolland (Rolly) Fox passed away from lung cancer Tuesday afternoon. The initial cancer diagnosis was made in January.
The following statement has been released by the Terry Fox foundation:
Our Dad and Grandpa is no longer telling jokes. Rolland Murray Fox died late afternoon on March 8th while listening to a little Hank Williams. He fulfilled his promise to Terry facing cancer with courage, grace and plenty of humour. He thanked everyone, every time as they left the room after caring for him and each and every family member and friend after a visit. Our promise to Dad is to try our very best to focus on the many memories of laughter he gifted us the last few weeks and throughout our lives. His room was always overflowing with family, love, laughter, song and story – does life offer anything better? We have witnessed once again the pain cancer causes but we know, oh how we know, that we are not alone. We have seen first hand the opportunities to extend life because of our nation’s collective belief and investment in cancer research, yet have been forced to accept that they were not available to Dad/Grandpa. We now have your journey, together with Terry’s, to offer us inspiration and hope from this day forward, forever more.
– The Fox Family
Back in January, the family said Rolly first started smoking at age 19. He quit smoking on a dare from a brother and exactly a year later ran a 10 miler. This May would have been 30 years since Rolland took his last puff.
(Picture from the Terry Fox Foundation’s website)