Christopher Anthony, an eighth-grader at Avalon Middle School in Avalon ISD, was declared the champion at the Ellis County Spelling Bee competition, which was hosted in Maypearl on Feb. 21.  

Chris will next compete at the Dallas Morning News Regional Spelling Bee on March 26; the competition will be televised on WFAA Channel 8.

Chris has been competing in the Avalon ISD spelling bee program since fourth grade and has been that district’s champion for the past three consecutive years.

Chris has represented Avalon ISD at the county spelling bee and finished in third place and sixth place for two of those years.  

“All of his hard work studying has finally paid off,” a spokesman said, describing Chris’ mother as “a champion among moms.”  

“She and her husband, David, have been instrumental in encouraging Chris to study his spelling words over the years during the competition,” the spokesman said. “Dr. Shirley Clary-Anthony is a psychotherapist and unit manager at a children’s home in Waxahachie.”

Chris has three brothers who also attend Avalon schools: Stephen, Jon, and Zack.

Jon and Zack began competing in the spelling bee this year and plan to continue in the program next year.