If you would like to talk to Marty or learn more about his foundation follow him on Facebook here.
HID- Tell us a little bit about yourself for people that might not know who you are?
Marty Sheedy- "Being born with multiple congenital deformities including Arthrogryposis & Prune Belly Syndrome, doctors told my parents that I wouldn't make it past the age of three, and, if I did, I would never walk or function normally. Well, I proved them wrong! Now 27, I launched the Project Scissor-Gait Foundation, after many years of persistent effort - to educate, promote and provide research & funding opportunities for people affected with similar conditions and help them live more productive lives. On a much broader scale, I am also a motivational speaker and use my disorders to encourage others with limitations, be it physical, mental or even spiritual. I am not defined by my “disabilities.”"
HID- What does it feel like to grow up knowing that doctors told you parents you would never make it past three years old? Has it influenced your perspective on life? How?
Marty Sheedy- "It has never bothered or really affected me too much – I was born with a rare condition and even now, doctors are still learning more about it. I take life in great stride and fully embrace “what is” – it is such a blessing to recognize my purpose here. I always look towards the positives in life."
HID- What motivated you to start your foundation "Project Scissor Gait"?
Marty Sheedy- "Everything is aligned. In High School, I did a few projects in health class talking about my conditions, and one thing led to another.
Later, I joined the Masons to become a Shriner enabling me to give back to the Shriners Hospital for Children – for all that they had done for me. That was the beginning of my adult journey to paying it forward. I got to travel around the country, from Edmonton to Arizona to Tampa, giving speeches about what the hospital did for me. Around that time, I began making many friends and contacts in Detroit’s entertainment world and was inspired (by that energy) to start the foundation and spread my mission even further. I always knew my path would lead me here and beyond."
HID- A lot of people don't understand what Gait means, how would you explain it to them?
Marty Sheedy- "Gait is simply the medical term for a person's manner of walking. Because walking
with my legs crossed like scissors makes it easier for me to move, due to my hips being dislocated – I decided to name the foundation Project Scissor-Gait. My walk has given me the Freedom of Mobility that has lead to experiencing a full and rich plethora of experiences and it also serves as a metaphor for others to find their own “freedom”."
HID- What does PSGF do?
Marty Sheedy- "The Project Scissor Gait Foundation will contribute to my journey so I can continue to motivate and inspire; and also gives me the ability to help those individuals and groups that are on my heart like Shriners Children’s Hospital and the Arthrogryposis and Prune Belly Associations. PSGF will educate, promote, and provide research and funding opportunities to those in dire need."
HID- What was it like handing out an award at the DMAs? That wasn't you first time in the spotlight, was it?
Marty Sheedy- "It was such an honor to present an award at this years DMAs. It is just another highlight in my life and sure sign that I am on the right path. I also got to hype up the crowd for 7/8 of Kid Rock’s sold-out DTE dates last year, as well as his performance on Fremont St. for the D Hotel & Casino. There is no feeling quite like that blast of love and energy coming from such large crowds."
HID- What are you favorite bands in Detroit?
Marty Sheedy- "I truly love what Kaleido is doing, and they are also huge supporters of my mission. I enjoy The Infatuations – and also recognize bands like Wilson and Flint Eastwood, I believe both bands have a very bright future ahead of them. I also turn to Kid Rock, Bob Seger, Motown, Eminem and all the classic music from Detroit for everyday inspiration.
HID- Favorite thing to do on a Friday night?
Marty Sheedy- "100% of my time here is dedicated to my mission. I live and breathe Project Scissor-Gait. My life is very fast paced and things are always moving, rarely do I have time to relax. Friday night I may be unwinding in a social setting, but always building the momentum to move the foundation forward – some weeks, the days just blend together."
HID- What’s next for Marty?
Marty Sheedy- "I am going to keep connecting the dots as I have, and continue being me and doing what I am supposed to be doing. I feel as though the stars are aligned. I am going to move my mission forward as far it can possibly go…"
HID- Anything else that you want our readers to know?
Marty Sheedy- "Thank you so much for being interested enough in what I am doing to reach this point. If you would like to learn more, please check my website at www.martysheedy.com or give our foundation page a ‘like’ on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/projectscissorgait - stay blessed!"