Steve Fonyo

Steve Fonyo

Real Name: Steve Fonyo
Category: Sports Heroes
Submitted by: Bob Sacamano
Posted Date: 2004-09-16
Last Modified: 2020-01-14

At the risk of sounding like a bad pun (not intended), Steve Fonyo followed in the footsteps of Canadian hero Terry Fox, each having lost a leg to cancer and embarking on a trans-Canada marathon to raise funds for cancer research. Sadly, Fox never completed the journey and succumbed to cancer and passed on without completing his quest. His efforts were not in vain and he inspired the likes of Steve Fonyo and Rick Hansen to undertake quests of their own. Fonyo succeeded in crossing the country over 1984 and 1985, raising over 13 million for cancer research. (Readers are encouraged to read the article in the references for the full story).

What happened to:

He retired from marathons after a follow-up run across Great Britain in 1986/87 and was awarded the Order of Canadain 1987. Alas, his life took a turn for the tragic, becoming mired in alchohol and drug abuse he suffered from depression and was nearly suicidal. In 1997 he was facing numerous criminal charges including firearms offenses, assault with a deadly weapon, fraud and theft. He received an 18 month suspended sentence, cleaned up his life, going on to study aircraft maintenance and obtain his helicopter pilot’s license. He currenty lives in a cabin on Cultus Lake and is the head mechanic for a limousine company.

UPDATE: His ‘Order of Canada’ was revoked on Dec. 10, 2009, because of “his multiple criminal convictions, for which there are no outstanding appeals”

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Steve Fonyo