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Family of Marathon of Hope runner Terry Fox mourns patriarch, Rolland

The Province logo The Province 2016-03-09 Stephanie Ip
Rolland Fox, father of Terry Fox, speaks at the annual Terry Fox Run in Port Coquitlam in 2011. The patriarch of the Fox family died Tuesday of cancer. © Ian Smith Rolland Fox, father of Terry Fox, speaks at the annual Terry Fox Run in Port Coquitlam in 2011. The patriarch of the Fox family died Tuesday of cancer.

Rolland Murray Fox, father of Canadian icon Terry Fox, died Tuesday.

A statement posted to the Terry Fox Foundation website on Tuesday confirmed Rolland Fox had succumbed to his battle against cancer.

“Our Dad and Grandpa is no longer telling jokes,” the statement begins. “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.”

Rolland Fox, affectionately known to friends and family as Rolly, was diagnosed with lung cancer in January of this year. He would have been 81 this month.

The Fox family shared the diagnosis earlier this year, noting that while Rolland was “initially troubled by the news,” he was committed to handling the news with the same optimism as his son.

His wife Betty died in 2011 due to health complications.

Terry Fox was diagnosed with osteosarcoma and his right leg was amputated in 1977. He was just 22 when he died in June 1981.

He had captured international attention for his attempted cross-Canada Marathon of Hope run and efforts to raise funds and draw attention to cancer research.

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