Leonard Robinson, better known to the public as "Baltimore Batman," died this past Sunday, Aug. 16, after being struck by a car on a Maryland highway, the Associated Press reports. He was 51.
Robinson became an unlikely star back in 2012, when police pulled over his custom-made Batmobile on Maryland's Route 29. He was dressed in full Batman regalia at the time, which unsurprisingly prompted a few jokes from the officers on the scene.
Video of the traffic stop went viral, racking up millions of views on YouTube and landing in various news broadcasts — including Anderson Cooper's RidicuList.
Afterward, it came to light that Robinson was known for dressing up like Batman to visit sick children in local hospitals. According to a Washington Post profile that same year, he spent nearly $25,000 a year — of his own money, which he made selling his commercial cleaning business — on Batman toys and memorabilia, which he then distributed to the kids he visited.
"Eventually, it sinks in and you become him," he told the paper. "It feels like I have a responsibility that's beyond a normal person. And that responsibility is to be there for the kids, to be strong for them, and to make them smile as much as I can."
According to the AP, Robinson had engine trouble with his Batmobile on Aug. 16, and was standing in the fast lane of the eastbound I-70 in Maryland when a Toyota Camry struck his car. He died on the scene.
"He touched a lot of lives and made a lot of kids smile," his younger brother, Scott Robinson, told the Washington Post after his death. "That's all he wanted to do."
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