Honored Kid

Benicio (Benny) Martinez

Age 18
Benicio (Benny) Martinez Kid Photo


Park Ridge, IL, US


Brain or spinal cord tumor

Date of Diagnosis

March 2016


In treatment

Treated At

Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children

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My Story

Benicio participated earlier this year in the St. Baldrick's fundraiser hosted by his middle school. He was very proud to have raised $1,630 to help find a cure for childhood cancer, making him the top fundraiser in the 6th grade and the third highest fundraiser in the whole school. He was one of the first to have his head shaved in a big school ceremony on March 18th.  Eleven days later, while on vacation in Orlando, we took him to the ER after a bout of vomiting and headaches. A CT scan revealed that he had a walnut-sized brain tumor located in the posterior fossa that was ultimately diagnosed as classic Medulloblastoma. A couple of weeks after surgery to remove as much of the tumor as possible, he was transferred back to the Chicago area to be nearer to home. Since then he has undergone intensive proton radiation therapy and is progressing through nine rounds of chemo. Benicio also suffers from a devastating side effect from the surgery called Posterior Fossa Syndrome.  As a result, he continues to undergo intensive therapy to learn to swallow, talk, and walk again. 
Benicio's participation in St. Baldrick’s fundraiser just days before his diagnosis is more than one of life’s ironies. Although we have and will benefit from many wonderful organizations during and after his treatment, the St. Baldrick's Foundation is very special to Benny. So many people have asked how they can help. We can't think of a better way than to donate to the St. Baldrick's Foundation to fund lifesaving research for all childhood cancers.  Thank you for supporting Benicio and the more than 300,000 kids worldwide who will be diagnosed with cancer this year. By sharing the gifts of your time, talent and money with the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, you're supporting research to give all kids with cancer a better chance for a cure.

The Childhood Cancer Ripple Effect

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