Sneaker enthusiasts come in all different shapes, sizes, and from many different walks of life. We have the honor of having men and women serve in the military to protect our rights and freedoms every day. With today being Armed Forces Day, we decided to take a look at soldiers who serve and love sneakers. When not in government issued gear, these men and women rock extensive collections of sneakers. With the branches of the United States Armed Forces stretching to every corner of the Earth, no two collections are the same. As we celebrate May being Armed Forces month, check out the first part of the Nice Kicks Armed Forces Spotlight, where eight soldiers share their passion for sneakers.
Name: SGT Richie Cedeno
Branch: United States Army
Year in the Service: 9
Originally From: St. Petersburg, FL via Manhattan, NY
Current Station: Ft. Drum; Ft. Drum, NY
Nice Kicks: How many shoes do you currently own?
SGT Cedeno: Currently around 95-100.
Nice Kicks: What is the favorite shoe in your collection?
SGT Cedeno: I would have to say my favorite shoe in my collection is my Carmine 6s.
Nice Kicks: What do you attribute your love of sneakers to?
SGT Cedeno: The culture of NYC in the early ’80s. As a toddler, my uncles would buy me all kinds of kicks to keep me fresh. I vividly remember getting my first pair of shell toes and fresh pairs of BKs (British Knights) as a little kid. It’s something that has never left me, and I’ve loved sneakers ever since.
Nice Kicks: Has being in the military helped or hurt your ability to cop the shoes you want?
SGT Cedeno: It helps with building connections more so than copping shoes. Everyone with a stable job can cop shoes. In the military, a person is forced to move around quite a bit during their respective career. As a person who collects sneakers, this is beneficial in some aspects because you get put into markets that you never had an opportunity to collect in. Getting stationed in Europe for instance, is a blessing due to the exclusive releases, and different consumer climate down there. If I were to ever get stationed in Japan?! Forget about it! It’s a wrap! I’d go crazy and cop everything over there.
Nice Kicks: What is the craziest thing you have done for a pair of kicks?
SGT Cedeno: I’ve sat through some frigid nights and mornings in Syracuse, NY. I remember in November it being brick outside, like 9 degrees, and me sitting for like 8 Hours with hand warmers, two coats, gloves, and two pairs of pants waiting for the Galaxy Zoom Rookie/Olive 9 release. It took 3 hours for my feet to thaw out and feel normal after that night.