Fred Fox was busy on May 16.
The brother of Terry Fox not only shared his stories about the Marathon of Hope with local run organizers, he also attended city council to hear the story of another inspiring young person.
Monday night, Katie Enequist was officially presented the 35th annual Terry Fox Award and Citation.
The award, established in 1981, is given to a young citizen who best emulates the ideals and inspiration of Terry Fox.
Katie, 14, was chosen as the recipient of the award for “how she has faced a variety of complex and rare health challenges with positive enthusiasm,” the city wrote in a news release.
Katie has a rare form of scoliosis that cannot be repaired. Doctors don’t quite know what her rare medical condition is, and call it “an anomaly.”
In December, she was named police chief for a day, where she worked on her stern looks to discourage rowdy cops.
“She’s into kidney failure now. Her lungs are not functioning properly. We’ve had problems with pneumonia,” said her mother, Karli Enequist, at the time, “and we just found out about a month ago, in Edmonton at the children’s hospital, that her condition is terminal.”
Giving that stern look was challenging for Katie, who always has a smile on her face. Though her condition is terminal, she is said to bring joy to each person she meets every day.
Katie said she was “excited” to receive the award. Her parents were overwhelmed.
“We feel so honoured, so overwhelmed and just very blessed, Karli said. “She lives everyday to the fullest, and we just try to keep her comfortable. (Seeing her up there), we were so proud.
All those present were touched by the moment.
“I think it was very special for the family,” said local Terry Fox run co-chair Carrie McCoshen. “Katie had quite an entourage there, and it was a great moment.”
Fred Fox was also touched by the experience.
“What you guys do is awesome,” he said.
For the Enequist family, it’s a highlight in their daily journey.
“We have a motto,” Karli said. “We go foot by foot. We used to go day-by-day. We take things as they come and go, with the highs and lows, and keep strong for the family.
Katie’s father, Kelvin, echoed those statements.
“We pretty much learn from her,” he said. “Just take things in stride. That’s all you can do.”
–With files from Arthur White-Crummey and Jason Kerr