Batkid's Make-a-Wish Transforms San Francisco Into Gotham

Make-a-Wish fulfills 5-year-old leukemia patient Miles' wish to be Batman.

ByABC News
November 15, 2013, 9:36 AM

Nov. 15, 2013 — -- A little boy's wish galvanized San Francisco today and melted the hearts of people around the world who followed his exploits as the city transformed into Gotham to fulfill the 5-year-old leukemia patient's wish to be Batman for a day.

The Make-a-Wish Foundation created an entire day catered to Miles Scott's dream, and thousands of people turned out to cheer him on along the way. President Obama even issued his first ever Vine on Twitter congratulating Miles.

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His day began with a special edition cover of the San Francisco Chronicle, whose entire front page was dedicated to the young superhero. The headline for the lead story is "Batkid Saves City."

The author? None other than Clark Kent.

The other front-page stories, all about Batkid, were written by Lois Lane, Brenda Starr and Perry White.

Around 9:30 a.m. PT, Miles saw a breaking news story on a TV. The police chief asked whether anyone knows where Batkid is because he needs his help to solve a crime and "bringing the bad guys to justice," Make-a-Wish said in a statement.

Miles' day included rescuing a damsel in distress tied up across the Hyde Street cable car line and capturing the Riddler in the act of robbing a downtown vault. As Batkid ate his lunch at Burger Bar, he got a special message from the chief, telling him to go to the window where he looked out over Union Square and saw a huge group of volunteers jumping up and down and asking for his help.

While Batkid was eating lunch, the villainous Penguin was kidnapping famous San Francisco Giants mascot Lou Seal and Batkid rushed to the rescue. His last stop was City Hall, where the mayor and police chief thanked him and presented him with a key to the city as thousands of supporters cheered him on.

Even the U.S. Attorney's office got in on the action, issuing a news release announcing the arrest of the Riddler and the Penguin, thanks to BatKid.

"He is a sunny, positive little boy and finds his inspiration in super heroes," Make-a-Wish said of Miles. "When we interviewed Miles for a wish, he surprised even his parents: he wishes to be BatKid!"

Make-a-Wish decided to make Miles' dream come true and, in a rare move for the foundation, asked the public to participate.

"This is one that we thought of as a great opportunity for people to share in the power of a wish so they can see how it affects not only the children and their families, but also the other people involved," Jen Wilson, marketing and promotions manager for Make-a-Wish in San Francisco, told "It has a big impact on many people.

"Since he wants to be a superhero, we felt like having a large crowd there waiting with signs and cheering him on would make him feel like a hero, not just because he battle villains and helped fight crime, but he's a true hero," Wilson said.

The interest level in Miles' wish has been "extreme," Wilson said, and that this is "definitely not the typical wish we grant."

Twitter was ablaze with the hashtag #SFBatKid.

"We've gotten people who want to volunteer to participate, actors reaching out asking if they can play a role, photographers and videographers offering their services, people who want to give Miles gifts, makeup artists willing to donate their services, a fire truck that want to come out and show their support," Wilson said. "It's quite a range."