Betty Fox, mother of Canadian hero Terry Fox and a dedicated cancer crusader since his death in 1981, is reported to be seriously ill.

Betty Fox, mother of Canadian hero Terry Fox and a dedicated cancer crusader since his death in 1981, is reported to be seriously ill.

Betty Fox is ‘seriously ill’

Betty Fox, mother of the late Terry Fox, the Canadian hero from Port Coquitlam, is seriously ill, according to a statement posted today on the Terry Fox Foundation website.

Betty Fox, mother of the late Terry Fox, is seriously ill, according to a statement posted today on the Terry Fox Foundation website.

Media reports have stated she is in hospice in Chilliwack and at least one such report stated she was suffering from cancer. The statement on the foundation website says this is incorrect.

Below is the text of the statement:

Statement on Behalf of the Family of Mrs. Betty Fox, Mother of Terry Fox

Friday, June 3, 2011

We wish to share that our wife and mother, Mrs. Betty Fox, is seriously ill. Media reports today that she has cancer are incorrect. To respect her privacy, no other details will be provided.

We have always appreciated the support and understanding the media has granted to our family since Terry’s Marathon of Hope in 1980. We are hopeful that Betty’s privacy and ours will be respected at this time. We thank you in advance for your consideration.

As well, there are links on the site to send Fox messages of support, including at the email address bettyfoxmessages@gmail.com.

You can see the site and the links here.

The 31st annual Terry Fox Run happens on Sunday, Sept. 18, with the National School Run Day scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 28.

Since Fox, a Port Coquitlam kid who became a national hero, started his Marathon of Hope across Canada in 1980, more than $550 million has been raised in his memory to fight cancer.

For more than 30 years Betty has been the face of the Terry Fox Foundation, encouraging, inspiring, pushing the world to continue her son’s dream of eradicating cancer.

She quit her job, traveled the world, listened to stories, shed tears, shaved her head, and was selected to be a flag bearer among other Canadian celebrities for the opening ceremonies of the 2010 Winter Olympics – all in the name of her son.

It was what he would have wanted.

“I knew what Terry started was far more important than me loving the work I do, far more important,” she told The Chilliwack Progress last September for the 30th anniversary of the Terry Fox Run. “I don’t ever want anyone to think that this has changed my life. What I have done has been for my son and because I have believed in his cause. I believe there will be a cure for cancer.

“I know Terry would be proud, he would be very, very proud.”

More to come…

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