The Man In Motion World Tour Collection has found a new home.
Last week Rick Hansen donated 1700 artifacts and thousands of archival documents, photos, and videos linked to the Tour and his athletic career to the Canadian Museum of History.
Hansen said he had the collection stored at various locations, the BC Sports Hall of Fame, at his dad’s home in Williams Lake, the Tourism Discovery Centre, and in big storage locker as well.
When the Canadian Museum of History said they were interested in the massive collection, Hansen said it was a tremendous honor.
“A wonderful surprise and relief to know that an institution like the Canadian Museum of History would want to take on the artifacts and the collection and preserve them and organize them, then put them in a position where they could actually be out there to tell a story, not only about our tour but about the ongoing journey”.
We asked if there was a particular piece of the collection he found hard to part with.
“There was one really special, special thing that was given to me when I left on the Man In Motion Tour”, Hansen said, “and that was the little miniature version of the statue in Thunder Bay of Terry Fox, a good friend of mine, and his mom and dad gave that to me and I was honored to have it. It was a huge inspiration. Terry was on my wheelchair basketball team, and we hung together, he was such an inspiration to me and to millions of Canadians and people around the world. It was really hard to do the right thing and give that up, it had been in my office, it was in my motor home all around the world.
I thought it would be important to share it so it will be part of the collection. I think there’s a little bit of Terry Fox in all of us, we all have challenges, we can all dig deep and overcome, we’re all support by community and family and we can all make a difference in our own way”.
Hansen said his most memorable moment from the 26-month trek was his journey through China especially when he learned afterward that the son of the head of China had a spinal cord injury.
“ Pierre Elliot Trudeau had arranged for him to be treated in Canada, so his life was saved and he was inspired by the Canadian culture and values so when we made the application to go there, they said yes”, Hansen said, “It was amazing, millions of people from Beijing to Shanghai connecting to our tour and of course the personal challenge of getting up to the highest point on the Great Wall of China”.
In honor of the Tour’s 35th anniversary, the Rick Hansen Foundation invites the public to share memories of the Tour and download a free commemorative poster, desktop, or mobile wallpaper at RickHansen.com/35-years.