Thousands Turn Out as Make a Wish Foundation Helps BatKid Save San Francisco

National   Steven Ertelt   Nov 15, 2013   |   4:06PM    Washington, DC

When the citizens of San Francisco need someone to save the day, they have a hero they can turn to in Miles, a 5-year-old cancer-stricken boy, a.k.a. Batkid.

Miles is a member of the Make-A-Wish Foundation, which is making the little boy’s dream come true by turning Miles’ wish to be Batman into an all-out extravaganza in San Francisco. As word spread in the local news of the plan to outfit him with a Batsuit, Miles’ own Batmobile, a personal call from Police Chief Greg Suhr, and assistance from Batman himself in apprehending the Riddler, a flash mob of thousands turned up for the event.

Miles will ultimately chase the Penguin around AT&T Park, rescue citizens and earn the key to the city in a day-long exploit.

The day is a celebration for a 5-year-old whose been battling acute lymphoblastic leukemia since he was 20 months old. Miles’ cancer is in remission, and with the last of his chemotherapy in June, “he wanted to be Batman.”

For more on his story, see this local news report:

San Francisco has transformed into Gotham City Friday morning, fulfilling a special 5-year-old boy’s wish as he comes to the city’s rescue as a tiny caped crusader.

5-year-old Miles, who lives with his parents in Tulelake in Siskiyou County, became Batkid as his adventures commenced at 10 a.m., but he’s already a superhero.  The little boy has battled leukemia for most of his life and he’s winning.  Miles is now in remission.

The Make-A-Wish Foundation is making Miles’ dreams of becoming Batman, or Batkid, a reality.

“The wish he expressed carried so much in it. We are able to have fun with it, we’ll be having a good time,” said Eric Johnston of the Make-A-Wish foundation, who will be dressing up as Batman and accompanying Miles.

Social media has come alive Friday morning with supporters tweeting photos using the hashtag #SFBatkid and posting to Facebook. Thousands of volunteers are helping the wish come true by participating in the events, which will include a flash mob where the public is invited to turn out and root Miles on.
Miles received acrobatic training Thursday in preparing for his busy day Friday.

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“If you really want to be Batman you have to have the skills to fight crime. So he is coming here to learn some tumbling and acrobatics,” said Barry Kendall of the Circus Center in San Francisco.

Batkid will start his day saving a damsel in distress along the cable car line, then he’ll stop the Riddler from robbing a vault before pausing for some superkid fuel at the Burger Bar.  But he’ll have to eat fast so he can be ready for a phone call telling him the Penguin has kidnapped San Francisco Giants mascot, Lou Seal.