The state of Maryland and everyday super heroes everywhere are in mourning today after learning that Maryland’s very own Batman died on August 16 when his Batmobile broke down on Interstate 70 near Hagerstown. An oncoming vehicle crashed into the customized Lamborghini, killing Leonard B. Robinson, 51, who dressed as Batman and went to area hospitals bringing hope and comfort to thousands of sick children, according to a report from USA Today.
Robinson pulled his Batmobile over to the side of the road after experiencing engine problems; but his car was still partially sticking out onto one of the traffic lanes on I-70. A Toyota Camry crashed into Robinson’s vehicle, killing Robinson, who was on his way home from a car show. The driver of the Toyota was uninjured. No charges have been filed. The Maryland State Police are investigating the crash.
Robinson’s Batman persona went viral several years back when he made headlines for driving his Batmobile in full Bat wardrobe and getting pulled over for not having proper motor vehicle tags. Robinson had legal tags for his Bat- Lamborghini but forgot to put them back on his vehicle. Instead, he was sporting his Batman logo license plates at the time. Police in Montgomery County told him to get the proper plates back on the Batmobile and then sent him on his way. Those officers remember Robinson fondly.
“When we replay the traffic-stop video, we smile and laugh, fondly remembering the day that MCP met a real superhero. We hope that the Dark Knight’s bright light shines on.” ~ USA Today
The fatal crash occurred around 10:30 p.m. on Sunday, according to The Bellingham Herald. Police say that Robinson’s uninsured Batmobile had the Maryland license plate “4BATMAN.” Robinson began his Good Samaritan rounds in 2011. In addition to dressing up as the Bat, he also passed out books and toys to the hospitalized children he visited. By 2012, Robinson had spent about $25,000 of his own money on super hero gifts – mostly Batman related – for the kids, according to My San Antonio. The Herald quoted Laurie Strongin, executive director of Hope for Henry, as saying:
“Lenny really was Batman. He put so much care into being Batman. He was always in character, he talked to the kids like Batman. He provided kids with so much hope and he shared our mission to make these kids happy and whole. He’s such a hero because of how he lived his life.”
Robinson has his own super hero website at superheroesforkids.org. Condolences are beginning to pour into his Facebook page. For more on the Maryland Batman, see the video accompanying this article.