Batman Impersonator Who Visited Sick Children in Hospital Dies After Car Strikes His Batmobile
A Batman impersonator well known for visiting sick children in hospital was fatally struck by a car as he checked his broken-down Batmobile on the highway.
Leonard Robinson, a father-of-three from Owings Mills, Maryland, died after the crash on Sunday night.
The 51-year-old was returning from a weekend festival in South Charleston, West Virginia when he pulled over on eastbound I-70.
Robinson had stopped his car on the median, with the passenger side partly in the traffic lane, police said. He checking the engine of his Batmobile, a replica of the car used in the 1960s "Batman" television show, when it was accidentally hit by a Toyota Camry around 10.30pm, authorities said.
Robinson was known for visiting hospitals in the Baltimore-Washington area. He spent more than $25,000 of his own money on Batman-related each year, including toys, t-shirts and books to give away to sick children, the Washington Post previously reported.
In 2012, he gained national attention when dashcam video surfaced showing police officers pulling him over while he was driving his Batmobile.
On average, he made 18 visits a year to hospitals, schools and charity events to hand out gifts and discourage children from bullying, according to his father, Larry Robinson.
"To see these children, the smiles that come onto their faces — it was like a miracle for these children," his dad said.
On Monday, LifeBridge Health - one of the hospitals he visited - paid tribute to him on Facebook.
"The entire LifeBridge Health team is deeply saddened by the passing of Lenny Robinson," they wrote. "Over the years, Lenny has done so much to lift the spirits of our patients young and old."
It continued: "Our condolences go out to Lenny's family, friends and legions of fans. Lenny was truly a superhero to us."
Robinson, who had bought the Batmobile after selling his successful cleaning company, also worked closely with Hope for Henry.
He helped founders Laurie Strongin and Allen Goldberg throw superhero parties in hospitals.
“He made so many kids so happy,” Strongin told the Washington Post. “When I asked him to do anything, he always said yes.”
In Sunday's incident, the driver of the Camry, a 39-year-old man from Charlottesville, Virginia, wasn't hurt and hasn't been charged.
The crash is still under investigation. The Associated Press reported that police said Robinson's car was uninsured and had a Maryland license, "4BATMAN," that was issued to another vehicle.
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