Cherokee rapper Litefoot designs sneakers

BY TESINA JACKSON
Former Reporter
08/16/2010 07:07 AM
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Bottom of the Litefoot AboriginalFootwear sneaker COURTESY PHOTO
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – In collaboration with Sole Nation Health, Cherokee rap artist, actor and entrepreneur Litefoot has become the first Native American celebrity to develop and produce a personal brand of sneakers to accommodate diabetics. “A lot of orthopedic shoes are not the coolest looking shoes, and some of the young people who should be wearing those shoes don’t because it’s not a cool shoe,” Litefoot said. “I think this shoe will give them the opportunity to wear something that’s really cool and that they won’t be embarrassed of, and it also speaks to their Native American heritage.”

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The sneaker will be released Oct. 11, and are available for purchase online at www.SoleNationHealth.com and www.Litefoot.com. Pre-orders for the shoe are $99, with the regular price set at $124.99. The shoe will also be available at a wholesale price for tribal clinics to purchase for their respective diabetes programs.


Though the shoe is designed for everybody, its target market is younger people with diabetes.The shoe idea came about earlier this year when Litefoot met Ernesto Castro, a citizen of the Pascua Yaqui Tribe in Arizona, who started the Native American-owned company, Sole Nation Health. The company’s mission is to provide footwear for the prevention of diabetic-related foot problems and to offer therapeutic shoe-fitting education to individuals in Native communities. It was after meeting Castro at a reservation economic summit in April that Litefoot and Castro came up with the idea of producing a stylish shoe for diabetics. “I approached him and gave him one of our flyers and we just started talking,” Castro said. “I just talked to him and I said ‘you know what? There are a lot of kids now who have diabetes and a lot kids who have neuropathy.’ We were finding that teenagers, 20-year-olds and 30-year-olds were getting amputations. I want to design a sneaker for them and it would be great if we collaborated and do something together.’”Without hesitation, Litefoot said he began looking for a shoe design idea based on what he liked. He took what he believed to be inspirational Native elements that he thought would work well on the sneaker and came up with the design. Litefoot Aboriginal Footwear started production soon after. The sneaker, which is mostly hand-made, are made out of leather and displays an arrow on the back of the shoe as well as on the sides. The shoes will be available in beige, or earth, black and white.
“The reason I put the arrows on the shoe is because I felt that this shoe should serve as inspiration; it should serve as momentum and forward progress,” Litefoot said. “The reason the arrow is pointing up on the back of the shoe is because I want people to really get that upward feel and inspirational feeling. The whole thought of rising and elevating and never thinking that there are boundaries for Native people. I really wanted that to be the inspiration behind the shoe.” The sneaker, which will be released Oct. 11, are available for purchase online at www.SoleNationHealth.com and www.Litefoot.com. Pre-orders for the shoe are $99, with the regular price set at $124.99. The shoe will also be available at a wholesale price for tribal clinics to purchase for their respective diabetes programs. Castro said his company has received more than 50 individual and more than 300 tribal nation pre-orders. Both companies have agreed to give a percentage of the profit to Native youth organizations and people throughout Indian Country. “I like to think that I’ve always been successful in those things that I put my mind to in Indian Country,” Litefoot said. “I’ve definitely put my mind to this, and it’s going to be not only something that’s cool and hot for people to wear in Indian Country and be proud of, but it’s going to serve our diabetic patients.”
ᏣᎳᎩ

ᏓᎵᏆ ᎣᎦᎳᎰᎹ. ᏌᏊᏃ ᏧᏂᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᏗ ᎾᎠᏂᏐᎢ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ ᏗᏃᏢᏍᎩ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎥᏰᎸᎢ ᏄᏛᎿᏕᎬᎢ , ᎠᏣᎳᎩ ᏗᎧᏃᎩᏍᏗᏍᎩ , ᎠᏛᏁᎸᏍᎩ ᎠᎴ ᎤᏮᏌ ᎤᏤᎵ ᏗᎦᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᏗ , Litefoot ᏩᎬᏱᏴ ᎠᏴᏫᏯ ᏧᏓᏃᏣᏟ ᎤᏬᎷᏩᏛᎮ ᎠᎴ ᏓᎪᏢᏁᎴ ᎤᏩᏌ ᏧᏬᏟᏍᏗ ᎥᏍᎩ ᏧᏤᎵ ᎨᏒᎢ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ ᏧᏍᏕᎸᎯᏓᏍᏗ ᎧᎵᏎᏥ ᎤᏁᎯ . ᏭᎪᏛᏃ ᎧᎵᏎᏥ ᏳᎾᎵᏍᏓᏁᎯ ᏧᎾᎳᏑᎶ ᎥᏝ ᏦᏍᏓ ᏗᎧᏃᏗᎢ ᏱᎩ ᎠᎴ ᎢᎦᏓ ᎠᏂᏫᎾᎯᎨ ᎠᏎ ᏧᎾᎳᏑᏟᏗ ᎠᏎᏃ ᎥᏝ ᏱᎾᎾᏛᏁᎰᎢ ᎠᏗᏍᎨᎢ . ᏂᎨᎵᏍᎬᏃ ᏳᎾᎵᏅᏓᏗᏏ ᎣᏍᏓ ᏗᎧᏃᏗᎢ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ ᏧᎾᎳᏑᏟᏗᎢ . ᎠᎴ ᎥᏝ ᏱᎬᎾᏕᎰᏍᎦ , ᎠᎴ ᎬᏂᎨᏒ ᏂᎬᏁᎭ Ꮎ ᏂᏧᎾᏛᏁᎸᏍᏔᏅᎢ . ᎯᎠᏃ ᎠᎬᏱᎢ ᏧᏕᏘᏴᏌᏗ ᎤᏓᏂᏖᏞᎢ ᎥᏍᎩ ᎾᏳᏍᏗ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ ᏧᏃᏢᏅᏗᎢ ᎾᎯᏳ ᏥᏚᎾᏠᏎᎢ Ernesto Castro , Pascua Yaqui ᎠᏂᏅᏍᏓᏢᎢ ᎾᎿ Arizona ᎨᎳ , ᎥᏍᎩᏃ ᏧᏓᎴᏅᏔᏅ ᎢᎩ Ꮎ ᎠᏁᎯᏴ ᎠᎹᏰᏟ ᎤᏤᎵ ᏗᎦᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᏗ , ᏗᎳᏑᎶ ᏗᏃᏢᏍᎩ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎥᎨᎸᎢ ᏄᏛᎿᏕᎬᎢ . ᎾᏃ ᎤᎾᏙᏢᏒ ᎠᎵᏍᎪᏟᏗ ᎥᏍᎩ ᏳᏍᏗ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ ᎧᎵᏎᏥ ᎤᏁᎯ ᎠᎴ ᎠᎵᏍᎪᏟᏗ ᎤᎾᏕᎶᏆᎥᎯᏍᏗ ᏄᎵᏍᎨᏗᏴ ᎾᎿ ᏧᏓᎴᎿᎢ ᏥᏕᎪᏢᎭ ᎠᏁᎯᏴ ᎾᎥᎢ ᏄᎾᏓᎴᏫᏒᎢ.

Castro ᏚᎾᏠᏎᎢ ᎲᎾ ᎠᎨᏅᏛ ᎦᏙ ᎤᎾᏤᎵ ᎠᏂᏴᏫᏯ ᏧᎬᏩᎶᏗ ᎠᎾᎦᏎᏍᏗᏍᎩ ᏓᎾᏠᏍᎬᎢ ᎧᏬᏂ ᏥᎧᎸᎢ Ꮎ Litefoot ᎠᎴ Castro ᎤᏃᎷᏩᏛᎮ ᎢᏳᎾᏛᏁᏗ ᏧᏃᏢᏅᏗ ᎪᎯᏴᏥᎩ ᏥᏚᎾᎳᏑᏠ ᎧᎵᏎᏥ ᎤᏁᎯ . ᎾᎥ ᏥᎷᏤᎴ ᎠᎴ ᎪᏪᎵ ᏥᏅᏁᎴ ᎠᎴ ᎣᎩᎾᎴᏅᎮ ᎣᏍᏓᏟᏃᎮᏍᏴ ᎠᏗᏍᏴᎢ Castro . ᎣᏍᏓᏟᏃᎮᏍᎬ ᎠᎴ ᎤᏂᎪᏗ ᏗᏂᏲᏟ Neuropathy ᎤᏁᎰᎢ . ᎣᏥᏩᏘ Ꮎ ᏗᎾᏛᏍᎩ , ᏔᎵ ᏍᎪᎯ ᎢᏧᎾᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᎠᎴ ᏦᏍᎪᎯ ᎢᏧᎾᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᏕᎨᏥᏅᏍᏕᏍᎦ , ᎠᏩᏚᎵ ᏗᎦᏥᏟᎶᏍᏓᏁᏗ ᎠᎳᏑᎶ ᎠᎴ ᎣᏍᏓ ᏱᎩ ᏌᏊ ᏗᎦᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᏗ . ᎩᎳᏫᏴ ᏚᏭᎬᏘᏔᏁᎢ , Litefoot ᏂᎦᏪᏍᎬ ᎤᎴᏅᎮ ᎤᏲᎲ ᏳᏍᏗ ᏧᏟᎶᏍᏙᏗ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ ᏄᏍᏛ ᎤᎸᏈᏛᎢ . ᏁᎵᏍᎬᏃ ᏄᏍᏛ ᎤᎩᏎ ᎤᎸᏈᏛᎢ ᏁᎯᏴ ᏄᏍᏗᏓᏅ ᎠᎴ ᎣᏍᏓ ᏱᏓᏙᏟᎦ ᎾᏊᏃ ᏚᏟᎶᏍᏔᏁ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ . Litefoot ᏩᎬᏱᏴ ᏧᏓᎴᏅᏔᏅ ᎥᏍᎩᏳᏍᏗ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ ᏕᎪᏢᏍᎬ . ᎾᏃ ᎠᎳᏑᎶ , ᏭᎪᏛ ᏧᏬᏰᏂ ᎬᏔᏅ ᏗᎪᏢᏅᎢ , ᎦᏃᏥᏃ ᎬᏔᏅ ᏗᎪᏢᏔᏅ ᎠᎴ ᎦᏝᏗ ᏓᏟᎶᏍᏓ ᎲᎾ ᎠᎳᏑᎶᎢ ᎣᏂᏗᏜ ᎠᎴ ᏓᏍᏛᎢ . ᎥᏍᎩᏃ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ ᏱᏛᎦᏁᎩ , ᏗᎬᎿ ᎠᎴ ᏧᏁᎦ , ᏓᎶᏂᎨ ᎤᏍᎪᎸ , ᎤᏬᏗᎨᏍᏗ ᏳᏍᏗ , ᏄᏰᏟᏛᏃ ᎦᏝᏗ ᏥᏓᏩᏟᎶᏍᏔᏅ ᎥᎾ ᎠᎳᏑᎶᎢ ᎯᎠᏃ ᎾᏪᎵᏎᎢ ᏗᎦᎸᏉᏗ ᏱᎩ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ , ᎠᏗᏍᎨᎢ Litefoot . ᏄᏰᏟᏛᏃ Ꮎ ᎦᏝᏗ ᎦᎸᏓᎦᏘ ᏥᏭᏓᏐᏍᏓ ᎥᎿ ᎠᎳᏑᎶᎢ ᎣᏂᏗᏜ , ᎠᏆᏚᎵ ᏴᏫ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎤᎾᏓᏅᏓᏗᏍᏗ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏁᎯᏯ ᎤᏂᏄᎸᎲᏍᎩ ᏳᏁᎵᏍᏗᎢ . ᎢᏙᏳᏃ ᎠᏆᏚᎵᏍᎬ ᎦᎸᏈᏙᏗ ᎢᏳᎵᏍᏙᏗ Ꮎ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ. ᎾᏃ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ , ᏱᏛᎬᎾᏫᏔ ᏚᏂᏃᏘ,11 , ᎠᎴ ᏱᏩᏙᏩᎯ Online at WWW. Sole Nation Health.com ᎠᎴ WWW. Litefoot .com ᎠᎬᏱᏭ ᏗᏓᏅᏍᏗ ᎥᏍᎩ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ $99. ᏧᎾᎬᏩᏟᏗ , Ꮩ ᏓᎬᏩᏟᏛ $ 124.99. ᎾᏃ ᏗᎳᏑᎶ ᎤᎪᏗ ᏗᎦᏅᏗᏅᏗ ᏧᎵᎬᏩᏢᏅ ᎠᏂᎳᏍᏓᏢᎢ ᏧᏂᏢᎩ ᏧᏂᏩᎯᏍᏗ ᎧᎵᏎᏥ ᎤᏁᎯ ᎤᎾᎵᏍᏕᏟᏙᏗ . Castro ᏂᎦᏪᏍᎬ ᎤᏩᏒ ᎬᏩᎷᏤᎳ 50 ᎠᎴ ᏳᎪᏗ ᎠᏂᏏᏴᏫᎭ ᎠᎴ 300 ᎠᏂᎳᏍᏓᏢᎢ ᎠᏰᎵ ᏚᎾᏛᏅᏎᎢ . ᎢᏧᎳᏃ ᏚᎾᏙᏢᏒᎢ ᏚᏄᎪᏔᏅ ᏧᏂᏁᏗ ᏍᏗ ᏱᎦᏗᎢ Ꮎ ᎠᏁᎯᏴ ᏗᎾᏛᏍᎩ ᏚᎾᏙᏢᏩᏗᏒ ᎠᎴ ᏴᏫ ᎠᏁᎲ ᏂᎬᎾᏛ ᎠᏂᏴᏫᏯ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᏚᎾᏙᏢᏩᏗᏒ . ᏱᏥᎸᏈᏗᏊ ᏯᏇᎵᏍᏗ ᏧᎬᏩᎶᏗ ᏥᏩᏘᏍᎬ ᏱᏓᏭᏘᏂ ᎾᎿ ᎠᏂᏴᏫᏯ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᏚᏙᏢᏩᏗᏒ. ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ Litefoot . ᎢᏙᏳᏃ ᎠᏆᏓᏅᏖᏟᏙᎸ ᎯᎠ ,ᎠᎴ ᎣᏍᏓ ᏗᎧᏃᏗᎢ ᎤᏩᏌ ᏱᎨᏎᏍᏗ ᎠᎴ ᏗᎧᎿᏂᏓᏍᏗ ᏚᎾᎳᏑᏢ ᎾᎿ ᎠᏂᏴᏫᏯ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᏚᎾᏙᏢᏩᏗᏒᎢ ᎠᏎᏍᎩᏂ ᎧᎵᏎᏥ ᎤᏁᎯ ᎤᎾᎵᏍᏕᏟᏙᏗ…..

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