An Extraordinary Boy from Missouri

Posted on 01/22/2021
FHMS Student, Chris Bini - The boy who defeated cancer and inspired the world

Chris Bini, a seventh grader at Francis Howell Middle School, is known for his love of baseball, his knowledge of Star Wars, and his unstoppable courage. In May of 2018, Bini was diagnosed with stage 3 acute lymphoblastic lymphoma. While just a fifth grader at John Weldon Elementary at the time, Bini began a courageous fight that would inspire his classmates, teachers, and eventually hundreds of people across the world.

During his 869-day treatment plan, Bini found ways to keep up his strength. While Legos and video games helped to pass the time, he found his main source of encouragement through his family and friends. Bini’s twin brother, Nathan, has dedicated all of his baseball games to his brother since his diagnosis.

Chris Bini and his brother, Nathan

Bini received many visitors and supporters when he was in the hospital, including teachers and classmates from school. Even though he missed a lot of classes during his treatment, the school communities at both John Weldon Elementary and FHMS always made sure he knew that they missed him.

Over the past couple of years, the schools found ways to show their support for Bini - congratulating him virtually the day he was declared in remission, wearing green and yellow to school in his honor, and celebrating with him over Zoom as he rang the bell to end his treatment. John Weldon Elementary even raised money to financially support his Make-A-Wish trip to Switzerland to visit his cousins.

It is evident that Bini is well-loved by the FHSD community, but what is even more incredible are the lessons that he has taught others both prior to and during his fight against cancer.

“Chris is an inspiration,” shared Tammy Coveney, Bini’s Character Connection teacher at FHMS.  “He has endured so much – the stress of cancer, the pain of treatment, the disappointment of missing out on activities he should be enjoying, and mostly, missing out on just being a kid.  On good days, he is happy and has a great sense of humor!  On bad days, he is quiet, but never defeated.” Despite the difficulties, Bini’s determined attitude was noticed by all.

“He gives 100% at everything he does and did not allow the illness to be an excuse to not be successful in school,” said FHMS school counselor Penney Nieder. “He will be a very successful man someday because he knows what a positive attitude and perseverance truly mean.”

Beyond his teachers, Bini has taught his own classmates what it means to be brave. “I remember the day he went to the hospital and I was really scared because he’s my best friend,” shared Tristan C. “Chris showed me that even when you’re scared you can get through it when you have friends and family standing behind you. I am proud to call him my best friend. ”

Chris Bini looks out a window at the hospital

Many others spoke highly of Bini’s courage, but also his kindness towards others. He is known to be a good listener, a respectful student, and most importantly, a loyal friend.

Bini’s story has inspired many throughout FHSD, but also throughout the world. His father works for an international company and has colleagues all across the country and globe. As they learned of his son’s story, many began writing letters and sending gifts to their family.

His strong group of supporters grew internationally and followed along throughout his treatment journey up until the last day. On Oct. 15, 2020, around 200 people across six continents and eleven countries logged into Zoom to witness Bini ring the bell to end his final treatment and celebrate being cancer-free.

Due to the pandemic, the Bini family had to change their big in-person celebration for their son to a virtual one. However, the global celebration made it even more special.

“We were able to include so many more people - people that have been with us on different parts of the journey this whole time,” shared Kelly Bini, Chris’ mom.

Bini’s story is truly a magnificent one. Who knew an ordinary boy from Missouri who loves baseball and Star Wars could one day impact the world!

Learn more about Bini’s story by visiting the KMOV website.

Chris Bini rings the bell   FHMS staff members wear Chris' Crew shirts

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