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  • Rolland (Rolly) Murray Fox: 1935-2016

    by User Not Found | Mar 15, 2016

    Rolly Fox

    Rolland (Rolly) Murray Fox was born March 22, 1935 in Winnipeg, Manitoba.  Rolly was the third of nine children born to Rodney Fox and Bertha (Shale) Fox.  The early years were difficult financially for the large Fox family resulting in Rolly, at the youthful age of 9, calling Saint Michael and All Angels Church his home for 2 years.

    He would get a taste of the west coast when he attended a cadet camp in Abbotsford, B.C. Rolly would meet Betty Lou Wark on Winnipeg’s busiest and coldest intersection, Portage and Main, and they would marry in 1956. The following year their first child Fred was born, Terry would arrive in 1958, Darrell would follow 4 years later and finally Judith, the daughter Betty wanted, completed the Fox family in 1965.  Rolly would begin a 36 year career with CN Rail in 1954.   Working outside in the harsh Manitoba winters prompted Rolly to consider raising his family in a warmer climate. The Fox family would make the move to Surrey, B.C. in 1966 where they rented a house. With the move Rolly would lose 12 years seniority at CN and would have to start fresh in his new role as switchman on Vancouver’s north shore. 

    In 1968 they would purchase 3337 Morrill St in Port Coquitlam which would be the family home for the next 16 years.   Rolly and Betty insisted on good behaviour, good manners, that their children should respect their elders and to speak only when spoken to.  Rolly was a competitor, he despised losing, whether it was a simple card game or rough wrestling in the living room – he was determined to win at all costs a trait successfully passed on to his children.  In early 1977 son Terry would be diagnosed with osteosarcoma.  Rolly was devastated and bitter thinking that life had delivered an unfair and cruel turn – Rolly would say he wished he could change places with his son and he meant it. It is well known that Betty reacted negatively when Terry delivered the news that he was going to run across the country – knowing the will of his son Rolly simply said “when?”.

    When Terry died in 1981, Rolly and Betty were forced into roles neither were expecting or educated for but they had an endless passion for their son and inherently understood his values and vision.  Betty was the public figure sharing Terry’s story – Rolly was the pillar of strength and support who was always close behind.  He had a serious side but place him in front of a room full of friends and family and get ready to be entertained by an unscripted performance.   He would evolve over the years from someone who was scrupulous with his money to a man who wanted to give to others regardless of the financial implications. 

    Loneliness arrived in Rolly’s life with the passing of his wife Betty in 2011 after 54 years of marriage. Rolly went almost overnight from a homebody to a man never at home. He would meet Janet Shields during this time who was also experiencing loss with the passing of her husband. They would marry in the spring of 2013 – there was no denying Rolly’s happiness the last few years.

    Rolly was diagnosed with lung cancer, stage 4, in January.  He was not devastated or bitter, accepted it quickly, fulfilling a promise to Terry of being strong and positive. It may have been his plan to give those around him these last few weeks a legion of memories to last a lifetime.

    Rolly is survived by his lovely wife Janet, three children Fred(Theresa), Darrell(Bonnie), and Judith, step children Gary, Stephen and Joanne, nine grandchildren, Terrance(Melissa), Kirsten, Erin(Matthew), Jessica, Sarah, DJ, Tianna, Alexandra, and Connor, brothers, Rod, Terry and Doug, sisters, Nancy, Barbara and Jeanine.

    A “Farewell Party” will be held at 11:00 am, Saturday, March 19th at Terry Fox Theatre 1260 Riverwood Gate, Port Coquitlam. Please email your interest in attending the service to rollyfoxservice@gmail.com. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to The Terry Fox Foundation Online at: terryfox.org. Mail to: The Terry Fox Foundation, #150-8960 University Street, Port Coquitlam, V5A 4Y6: Call 1-888-836-9786.

  • Blue Light Shines Brightly as a Highly Useful Oral Cancer Surgery Tool

    by User Not Found | Feb 12, 2016


    Terry Fox-funded researchers find that fluorescence visualization may drastically reduce cancer recurrence by clearly differentiating cancer cells from healthy tissue.

    New findings from a study nearly a decade in the making suggest that use of fluorescence visualization (FV) during oral cancer surgery drastically improves the accuracy of the removal of cancerous tissue and the preservation of healthy tissue, significantly reducing recurrence rates of oral cancer. 

    “Approximately one-in-three patients who undergo surgery to remove cancerous oral lesions will experience a recurrence of the disease within three years,” says Dr. Catherine Poh, study lead author and principal investigator on the Terry Fox Translational Research project - Canadian Optically Guided Approach for Oral Lesions Surgical Trial (COOLS).

    “Use of FV technology is currently not standard for all oral cancer surgeries to help surgeons decide how and where to remove diseased tissue, so this is a new way to perform oral cancer surgery and look at how this disease spreads.”

    The retrospective case-control observational study, published recently inAmerican Medical Association Otolaryngology—Head & Neck Surgery, included patients registered at the Department of Oral Oncology within the British Columbia Cancer Agency from 2004 to 2009. The study sought to assess the efficacy of FV-guided surgery in reducing recurrence at the site of the cancerous region and improving overall survival.

    The FV technique uses a regular white light filtered so that only blue light shines through. When the blue light shines on normal tissue, the tissue appears bright green. However, cancerous tissue under FV is easy to identify because it appears dark.

    Currently, surgical removal of cancerous lesions in the mouth requires cutting an extra 10 mm around the lesion (or tumour) in the hopes of removing cancerous cells that are often spreading and hard-to-see with unaided eyes. However, the study showed that even with standard use of the additional 10 mm margin, one-in-three patients will still experience local recurrence of the cancer.

    “Not using FV technology means sometimes under-cutting the affected area, or over-cutting in a direction we don’t even need to.”

    “With FV technology we found that the extension of this disease is not uniformly around the cancerous area, so a 10-mm margin around the tumour site may not always work,” explains Dr. Poh, who is also an oral pathologist and associate professor in the Faculty of Dentistry at the University of British Columbia

    The study’s findings showed that use of FV during surgery to remove lesions significantly reduced the three-year recurrence of cancerous tissue in the affected oral region. For patients with cancerous lesions, FV-guided therapy reduced their recurrence rate from 40 per cent to 6.5 per cent. Recurrence among patients with pre-invasive lesions dropped from 39 per cent to 9 per cent.

    According to Dr. Poh, Vancouver Coastal Health-affiliated head and neck surgeons in B.C. have already changed their practice and standardized use of FV during oral cancer surgeries. 

    “If the COOLS trial is supportive, this will have a huge impact for clinical practice,” she says. “It means the technology should be used as part of routine practice to assist the surgeon in deciding the surgical margin, which will likely improve outcomes in terms of being able to catch local recurrence. And having only one surgery compared to two or three and can save a lot of money for the health care system as well.”

  • Full house at 'Genomics and Cancer' Symposium

    by User Not Found | Nov 18, 2015

    Vancouver -- Around 350 people attended the Gairdner Foundation 'Genomics and Cancer' Symposium at UBC on 17 November. An international set of presenters shared their research and highlighted how genomics has moved their work forward. TFRI was pleased to support the event, with many Terry Fox-funded researchers and trainees in attendance.


    Speakers at the 2015 Gairdner Foundation symposium on 'Genomics and Cancer'

  • Researchers turn out for Terry Fox Morning Run

    by User Not Found | Nov 09, 2015
    Montreal -- Cancer researchers attending this year's Canadian Cancer Research Conference in Montreal rose early for the Terry Fox Early Morning Run. Darrell Fox took part and gave a short talk before the group set off - reminding participants of Terry's early starts. 


  • Terry Fox research team sets the bar high raising $35,000 in anniversary year

    by User Not Found | Oct 14, 2015

    COVCo_retreat_Sep_ 2015_web
    Members of the COVCo team at their scientific retreat

    To honour the 35th anniversary of the Marathon of Hope, many Terry Fox-funded research teams across Canada took up the challenge of fundraising for this year’s Terry Fox Run. Nearly 20 research teams took part and raised more than $70,000 for the Terry Fox Foundation. One team in particular set the bar high for future years – the oncolytic virus team led by Dr. John Bell in Ottawa raised over $35,000.

    Earlier in 2015, Dr. Bell decided to hold his research group’s annual scientific retreat the day after the Terry Fox Run. This brought the Terry Fox Canadian Oncolytic Virus Consortium (COVCo) researchers together in Ottawa to participate in the run as one team.

    Dr. Rebecca Auer, a Terry Fox New Investigator on Dr. Bell’s team, suggested that the team challenge themselves to raise $35,000 to honour the 35th anniversary of the Marathon of Hope. This was a lofty goal that Dr. Bell didn’t think they could reach. “Showing my usual great leadership skills, I told her that was a ridiculous goal that we would never achieve and tried to talk her down,” laughs Dr. Bell. “Rebecca told me that we could definitely do it if we tried and definitely couldn't do it if we didn't try!”

    The group’s PIs and trainees took up the challenge at their research sites in Ottawa, Montreal, Halifax, Vancouver and Toronto. Chili lunches, bake sales, yard sales and game nights were held throughout the summer and the group raised $35,120 by run day, with more donations still to come in.

    The team held their annual research retreat the day after the run. They reviewed their scientific progress over the last year, shared ideas and planned their strategy for the year ahead.

    Dr. Auer said “it was truly a team effort from summer students to PIs and the retreat was amazing. As always, I left feeling more invigorated about my research program and the opportunities for collaboration.”

  • Photos from the 35th anniversary Terry Fox Run

    by User Not Found | Sep 21, 2015

    Terry Fox-funded researchers from across the country took part in the 35th anniversary Terry Fox Run on Sept. 20, 2015. Here are a selection of photos.

    For more photos from the day, see The Terry Fox Foundation Facebook page.

    Judith Fox (red jacket,front centre) with researchers at the Terry Fox Run in Stanley Park.

    Judith Fox-Alder address the crowd at the Terry Fox Run in Stanley Park, Vancouver


    Terry Fox-funded researchers, Dr. Marianne Koritzinsky and Dr. Brad Wouters with their daughter Nora and their dog Castro at a Terry Fox run in Toronto.


    Timon Buys with his son Teis at the Vancouver Terry Fox Run in Stanley Park

    Heather Strong (right), TFF Newfoundland Provincial Director with Terry Fox-funded researchers from Memorial University (MUN)

  • $16-million from supporters and partners fuels research to improve detection, treatment for high-risk, inherited cancers

    by User Not Found | Sep 15, 2015

    Vincent_Giguere_500x500 dick_john_500x500 Jones_Steven_500x500 Malkin_David_500x500
    Dr. Vincent Giguère, Dr. John Dick, Dr. Steven Jones and Dr. David Malkin


    $16-million from supporters and partners fuels research to improve detection, treatment for high-risk, inherited cancers

    Vancouver, BC – In this 35th anniversary year of the Terry Fox Marathon of Hope, a $16-million injection of funding from the Terry Fox Foundation and three new research partners will enable four world-class Canadian research teams to find new ways to detect and treat high-risk and inherited cancers.

    2015-ppg-locke-edit    Luana Locke with her children Juliet and Lucas.

    The news is heartwarming to Toronto breast cancer survivor Luana Locke. An abnormal gene in her family puts members at risk of developing cancer at any age and in any part of the body, but Terry Fox funding for research on Li-Fraumeni Syndrome, may help to change this. “To know there are people who continue asking the important questions and who are committed to conducting the type of research that might one day lead to more effective ways of detecting cancer at the earliest possible stages, a cure or, best of all, the means to prevent a cancer from occurring at all, gives me incredible hope. I wish them all success and hope for promising results,” she says.

    “We are grateful to the Terry Fox Foundation and our new partners for providing $16-million to four outstanding research teams this year. It takes many donors, partners and teams working together to tackle the big challenges in cancer research – from helping families with Li-Fraumeni Syndrome, to why cancer grows and spreads, to how best to treat it so more lives are saved and fewer patients suffer from long-lasting, side-effects of treatments,” said Dr. Victor Ling, president and scientific director of The Terry Fox Research Institute.”

    “Terry ran a marathon a day for 143 days in 1980 to raise money for cancer research. His legacy continues thanks to our supporters whose contributions fuel the work of these investigators and over 300 others in Canada who receive Terry Fox funding from our Terry Fox Run,” said Terry Fox Foundation executive director Britt Andersen. The Terry Fox Run will be held this Sunday, September 20. The Foundation is asking donors to commemorate the 35th anniversary with a $1 donation to cancer research in Terry’s name.

    The Terry Fox New Frontiers Program Project Grant program is highly-competitive; following international peer review, funds are awarded annually to groups of investigators to support breakthrough and transformative biomedical research which may form the basis for innovative cancer prevention, diagnosis and/or treatment.

    Breakdown of $16-million investment/funded projects by province.



    • Dr. John Dick, senior scientist at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre/ University Health Network (Toronto) and his group of investigators will receive a total of $6.2 million over five years to continue to advance our understanding of “cancer stemness.” He will focus his work on uncovering ways to improve our detection of and treatment for three high-risk cancers: acute myeloid leukemia, myeloma and brain cancer.
    • Dr. David Malkin, senior scientist and oncologist at The Hospital for Sick Children (Toronto), along with investigators there and at Dalhousie University in Halifax, will receive $2.2 million over three years to develop better ways to predict the type and age of onset of cancer due to an inherited condition, Li-Fraumeni Syndrome, to detect these cancers earlier, and to identify ways to prevent them from developing in the first place.

    British Columbia

    • Dr. Steven Jones, associate director of the Canada Michael Smith Genome Sciences Centre at the BC Cancer Agency (Vancouver), and colleagues will receive a total of $2.2 million over three years to develop new drugs that use the targeted mechanisms of antiboides to kill only cancer cells and to spare normal ones. Ottawa-based BioCanRx is supporting this work with a $749,000 contribution in addition to TFRI’s $1.5 million.


    • Dr Vincent Giguére, a scientist and professor of biochemistry, medicine and oncology at McGill University’s Goodman Cancer Research Centre of McGill University (Montreal), and his team will use a $5.3-million, four-year award to understand how metabolic processes and pathways contribute to the growth and survival of cancer cells, leading to treatment resistance and metastasis. In addition to funding from TFRI, this team’s work is supported by McGill University’s Rosalind and Morris Goodman Cancer Research Centre Fund  ($554,512) and the Fondation du cancer du sein du Quebec ($500,000).

    Quotes from Funding Partners

    "BioCanRx and the Terry Fox Foundation share a deep commitment to supporting research and development of improved cancer therapies. We are excited to partner with such a renowned organization as the Terry Fox Foundation and to support the kind of innovative research that will lead to better treatment options and improved outcomes for cancer patients." –  Christian Carswell, President and CEO (Acting), Biotherapeutics for Cancer Treatment (BioCanRx)

    “The Goodman Cancer Research Centre and McGill University are delighted to partner with the Terry Fox Research Institute and the Québec Breast Cancer Foundation to fight hard to treat resistant and metastatic cancer. The Oncometablism group at the Goodman Cancer Research Centre are reconized internationally for their contributions to understand how cancer cells depend on metabolic changes for survival. This continued funding will continue to develop innovation and leadership and lead to new understanding of how to treat cancer.” – Dr. Morag Park, Director, Rosalind and Morris Goodman Cancer Research Centre at McGill University.

    “It is with great enthusiasm that the Québec Breast Cancer Foundation is partnering up for the first time with the Terry Fox Research Institute, as part of a new research partnership in Québec. This collaboration between our two organizations will allow world-class teams of experts from Québec to make a real difference in the lives of thousands of women affected by breast cancer each year. It is by working together that we’ll be able to achieve our vision of a future without breast cancer!” – Nathalie Tremblay, CEO, Quebec Breast Cancer Foundation

    The Terry Fox New Frontiers Program Project Grant program was created over 30 years ago. A highly competitive program, funds are awarded annually to support breakthrough and transformative biomedical research which may form the basis for innovative cancer prevention, diagnosis and/or treatment.


    About TFRI
    Launched in October 2007, The Terry Fox Research Institute is the brainchild of The Terry Fox Foundation and today functions as its research arm. TFRI seeks to improve significantly the outcomes of cancer research for the patient through a highly collaborative, team-oriented, milestone-based approach to research that will enable discoveries to translate quickly into practical solutions for cancer patients worldwide. TFRI collaborates with over 60 cancer hospitals and research organizations across Canada. TFRI headquarters are in Vancouver, BC. www.tfri.ca

    About BioCanRX – Biotherapeutics for Cancer Treatment
    BioCanRX is a national network working to accelerate Canada's most promising biologically based cancer treatments into clinical trials. These biotherapies are designed to trigger our immune system in a way that attacks just the cancer and leaves our healthy cells unharmed, all without the toxic effects of standard chemotherapy and radiation.  BioCanRX is provided funding from the federal government's Networks of Centres of Excellence, and support from industry, the provinces and many national charities. Visit: www.biocanrx.com

    About the Quebec Breast Cancer Foundation
    The Quebec Breast Cancer Foundation is the only non-profit organization devoted entirely to the fight against breast cancer through research and innovation, raising awareness, and by providing education and support to those affected by the disease and their loved ones. Visit:  www.rubanrose.org.

    About the Rosalind and Morris Goodman Cancer Research Centre
    The Rosalind and Morris Goodman Cancer Research Centre (GCRC) is recognized as a top research and training environment for cancer research in Canada. The mission of the GCRC includes research aimed at improving the understanding and treatment of cancer through excellence in fundamental and translational research programs, training the next generation of cancer researchers as well as public outreach that educates the population on the importance, value and successes of cancer research in treatment of this disease. Visit www.mcgillgcrc.com

    About The BC Cancer Agency
    The BC Cancer Agency, an agency of the Provincial Health Services Authority, is committed to reducing the incidence of cancer, reducing the mortality from cancer, and improving the quality of life of those living with cancer. It provides a comprehensive cancer control program for the people of British Columbia by working with community partners to deliver a range of oncology services, including prevention, early detection, diagnosis and treatment, research, education, supportive care, rehabilitation and palliative care. Visit www.bccancer.bc.ca


  • Darrell Fox cycling to Mount Terry Fox

    by User Not Found | Sep 04, 2015

    September 4, 2015 -- Darrell Fox is cycling 350km from Kamloops to Valemount ahead of the Fox Family hike up Mount Terry Fox on Sunday, September 6. Darrell is taking a photo every 35km of his journey. To donate visit: www.terryfox.org/Mt_Terry_Fox_Trek.html

    000km  035km   105km   140km
  • Fox Family to hike to summit of Mount Terry Fox

    by User Not Found | Sep 02, 2015

    Mount TF dedication family 2
    The Fox family at the dedication of Mount Terry Fox in September 1981. Credit: The Terry Fox Foundation

    Family members, Terry Foxers will hike 18 kilometres to summit of Mount Terry Fox on Sunday, Sept. 6

    Vancouver, BC -- Family of Canadian icon Terry Fox will reflect on 35 years of dedication to cancer research and Terry’s memory when they and 50-plus “Terry Foxers” hike 18 kilometres to the summit of Mount Terry Fox in Valemount, BC on Sunday, September 6.

    This marks the first time the Fox family will gather at the monument since the mountain was named for Terry on September 22, 1981.

    Not content with summiting the 8,500-ft mountain, Terry’s younger brother Darrell will cycle to the start of the trek. He will cover a distance of 350 km from Kamloops to the trailhead near Valemount on Friday, September 4.

    “I wanted to add a little more excitement and pain!” laughs Darrell. “I buy into Terry's thinking that life is short and we never know what might happen tomorrow, next week, next year. It will only be the 35th anniversary once and I was keen to do something a little more challenging while I am still able.”

    In honour of Terry’s original fundraising request in 1980, The Terry Fox Foundation (TFF) is asking every Canadian to donate a dollar in this commemorative year to support cancer research.

    “Terry was all about setting and accomplishing goals, some of them pretty lofty, so a Mount Terry Fox is a nice analogy,” says Darrell. “Compared to Terry's physical and mental accomplishments during the Marathon of Hope, it really is nothing to reach the top of Mount Terry Fox. I know I will be drawing on Terry for inspiration and strength along the way.”

    Donations to support the Fox family and Terry Foxers on the trek can be made online at http://www.terryfox.org/Mt_Terry_Fox_Trek.html

    Funds raised by The Terry Fox Foundation support research undertaken by The Terry Fox Research Institute, which invests in excellence through team-based discovery, translational and capacity-building research to improve outcomes for cancer patients. To date TFF has raised over $700 million for cancer research.

  • Terry Fox Run 2015

    by User Not Found | Aug 31, 2015
    The 2015 Terry Fox Run takes place on Sunday, September 20. Many Terry Fox-funded research teams have signed-up to mark the 35th anniversary of Terry's Marathon of Hope. There is still time to register for your local run: www.terryfox.org/Run/
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