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Chris and Lisa Gardner are beside themselves with joy. They have just learned that they are pregnant with their first child. But what they thought would be a routine ultrasound quickly turned into a daily and perpetual nightmare for the two parents.
But everything changes on an afternoon in 2004. During an appointment to rule out the possibility of their baby inheriting the disease, they are brought into the doctor’s office. What the doctor says next shatters their world.
The following Tuesday the couple drove hours to Philadelphia for further medical tests. “Needless to say, that weekend was the hardest of our lives as we faced the unknown.” That Tuesday, Lisa undergoes a series of grueling and exhausting tests, bringing her to the brink of her emotional and physical endurance.
The two meet with a team of genetics at the end of the day. Their tragedy becomes even worse: “They told us they thought the baby had TAR syndrome (Thrombocytopenia Absent Radii).” The chances are not good for the little unborn baby: the doctors give them an ultimatum, an abortion was only possible within the next 48 hours. Otherwise, the baby would have to be brought to term.
And 4 months later a miracle happens: Elizabeth Faith is born on December 16th, 2004 via a Cesarean section. Elizabeth is born with no ligaments in her knees and severe bowing in both legs. Nevertheless, she is the most beautiful sight that the parents could have ever seen. But the joy only lasts momentarily as Elizabeth is immediately brought into intensive care. She is born with just 7,000 platelets (versus a normal 150,000). Any bruise could kill her.
But, 5 years later everything changes on one fateful day in August, 2013 as a car pulls up in front of the hospital and a caped figure emerges. The kids can’t believe their eyes. It’s Batman!
Lenny Robinson is a self-made businessman from Maryland who made millions with a cleaning business he started as a teenager. He began visiting hospitals in 2001 dressed as batman and has since invested hundreds of thousands of dollars into the gig. For over a decade, Lenny has sped around the Mid-Atlantic performing acts of charities for children’s causes all over.
When Elizabeth Garner gets to see the caped crusader, she is overwhelmed with joy. She explains that she is “happy to be his friend. I know I can trust him.” Having a superhero as her friend makes Elizabeth feel like she can do anything. But, not all is right in Gotham City.
Elizabeth tells Batman that she is being bullied by other kids at school because of her deformities. “They don’t believe that Batman is my friend,” she tells him. So they superhero decides to take matters into his own hand: donned in his full equipment, including utility belt, Batman makes an appearance at a school assembly to teach the children how bad bullying is. During the assembly he calls Elizabeth on stage and gives her a special Batman necklace to let the other kids know that he is on her side. “Elizabeth,” he announces, “is my friend.”
After the assembly, the two sit across from each other behind the stage. The following moment is one of incredible vulnerability for the superhero. “I wish I could be more like you,” he tells her. But Elizabeth shakes her head in dismay as it is now HER turn to comfort the hero. “That won’t do,” she says. “You’re your own person.”
Later in 2013, Lizzie does the unthinkable. Lizzie is able to participate in the annual Save-A-Limb Walk in Baltimore, Maryland. At 10:57:26 AM on October 19, 2013 she crosses the finish line: it is the first mile she has ever walked on her own.
Sadly, Lenny Robinson died just days ago in a car accident while on his way to a hospital visit. Here is the video of him from 2012 being pulled over in his Batmobile which made him an instant internet star. Millions have expressed their sadness, including James Franco.
Lenny Robinson lived the life of a true hero with total sacrifice and selflessness and in the end he died what he did doing: being a true caped crusader on the way to helping others. If the story of this ultimate heroic duo also touched and impressed you as much as it did me, then share this untold story of this local hero known around the world as the real life Batman.