Every September, cities across Canada hold marathons to celebrate Terry Fox and raise money for cancer research. In the latest issue of Chickadee, we featured Terry Fox’s story to celebrate the Canadian hero.
We talked with author and illustrator Josh Holinaty about retelling Terry’s story. Let’s hear what he had to say!
What inspired you to write the Terry Fox story for Chickadee?
Initially, the fine folks over at Chickadee approached me to see if I was interested in writing and illustrating a comic about Terry Fox, and I was more than happy to take part! Terry is such a huge Canadian hero with such an inspiring story, and he’s also a personal hero of mine. Also, I was up for the challenge to try telling the story of Terry Fox in only four short pages, while also giving him the respect he deserves.
What is your favourite panel in the comic?
There are a couple panels in the comic where Terry is running with the sun setting behind him, and I think those are my favourite. They feel epic and hopeful—or at least I hope they do! What I was hoping to get across in those panels is Terry’s determination and the legacy he left behind. All of Canada, and even the world, was behind him and his cause, but in the end he was just one person filled with huge determination to make change.
What did you enjoy most about writing and drawing this story?
I think my favourite part of working on this comic was researching and reading about Terry’s story to make sure I got the details right. (A tip to young writers and artists out there: researching your subject is important). Also, I’ve always had a soft spot for Terry’s story–he’s a real hero of mine. The story of his life never ceases to amaze and inspire me, even though I’ve heard and read about it since I was a kid myself. Being able to re-read his story was once again very enjoyable.
What do you admire most about Terry Fox?
His sheer determination is so inspiring. I’m still blown away at how far he ran in such a short time while also battling cancer. It’s truly powerful, heartbreaking, and inspiring all at the same time.
Are you taking part this year in the Marathon of Hope?
You bet! I’ve been a an avid runner for years, and every time I hop out for a run, the thought of Terry Fox crosses my mind. I’ll be sure to go for a run on that day and donate to the cause.
Readers, are you taking part in the Terry Fox Run in your community? Let us know in the comments below!