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Batman Tumbler donated to Santa Fe College

BY LEN CABRERA

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – James Coats donated a miniature Batman Tumbler to Santa Fe College in a ceremony today outside the Santa Fe College Police Department.

Chuck Clemons hosted the event as the school’s Vice President for Advancement and Executive Director of the Santa Fe College Foundation.

Clemons introduced Coats with a brief history of his background. As a child, Coats had severe allergies that caused him to spend a lot of time in hospitals. He passed that time reading comic books. Now he uses that experience to bring hope to children living through the challenges of childhood diseases through his 501(c)(3) charity, Superheroes for Hope.

The gift was modeled on the Tumbler introduced in Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins (2005). Coats did not specify the exact donor vehicle, but it is an off-road side-by-side four-wheeler similar to a Honda Talon or Polaris RZR. The Tumbler is driveable, but not street-legal.

James Coats with the Tumbler

Clemons said, “This gift today that James Coats is presenting to Santa Fe College will be impactful.”

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Santa Fe College Trustee Caridad “Carrie” Lee accepted the gift on behalf of the college. In her comments, she thanked Coats for his inspiration to kids. She said, “We’re fortunate, here at Santa Fe, that we’re surrounded by people who are so committed to kids, to our students. We are excited about using your creation to bring more students inspiration.”

In his remarks, Coats addressed why he chose to donate the car to Santa Fe College. He said, “Santa Fe does an incredible job at literally educating our community, and those members stay in our community… Santa Fe has quite a percentage [of students] who stay local because their families are already here and their work is already here. They’re improving their lives.”

Coats said his superhero vehicle of choice is the Batmobile because he most relates to Bruce Wayne as a broken man who tries to improve people’s lives. He said the vehicle is an inspiration and a way to get attention. He expects people to take pictures and share them, which will bring attention to Santa Fe College. (His prediction quickly proved true as at least six students passing by after the ceremony stopped to take selfies with the Tumbler.)

Coats said, “Santa Fe has the ability to transform individuals, families, businesses, and communities. I want to make sure they have every tool to do this.” He said the more people invest in Santa Fe, either with dollars or gifts, the better our community will be. He concluded his comments with, “Thank you for what you do. You are truly enriching the only true natural resources we have, which is our children.”

After the ceremony, Clemons said the school plans to use the Tumbler as a recruiting tool. He said Santa Fe College is actively recruiting at all nine public high schools in Alachua and Bradford Counties. They are planning to start recruiting at middle schools to teach students that college isn’t just about becoming a doctor or lawyer and that Santa Fe has programs for many career fields.

  • What a great donation… and middle school outreach is such a great opportunity!!

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