Our Featured Skater for the month of June is CleoSmashYa of the Shotgun Sheilas!
Team(s): Shotgun Sheilas, Public Enemies
Position(s): Jammer, pivot
Seasons with FCRD: 2
Q: How did you come to be involved with Fountain City Roller Derby?
“In my early twenties, I used to inline skate on ramps and transition at skate parks. So when one of my ex-coworkers introduced me to roller derby, I knew this was something I had to be a part of. I get to skate and hit people?! Heck yeah!”
Q: Explain the origin of your derby name.
“I’ve always been obsessed with Egypt since I was a tiny girl. I’d read every book I could get my hands on, tried to study hieroglyphics, and wanted to be an archeologist. So fast forward to my early thirties when I did the study on my family’s lineage, and with the help of an ancestry test, I found out I was 12% Moroccan/Egyptian. I was beyond stoked; hence, CleoSmashya was born, based on a powerful Egyptian Queen.”
Q: Roller derby changes every life it touches. How has it changed yours?
“I don’t know where to start… I could go on forever.
Derby has saved me. At a time when I had very little family and no community to fall back on, derby fell into my lap. The universe knew I needed a community to lean on and give back to. I have built friendships that are closer than family. I know that derby has helped me blossom into a strong and powerful woman. I have found my voice, worth, and belonging. The derby community has helped me find out a lot about myself, for which I’m forever grateful.”
Q: What makes CleoSmashYa tick? What keeps you going in this crazy love we call roller derby?
“I think knowing I’m a part of something bigger than myself keeps me going. Knowing my teammates are out there giving their all, and making holes and protecting me, makes me want to go even harder. I don’t want to let them down! I am only as good as we are as a whole.
If I could play and sell roller derby for a living, I’d be fantastic.”
To see more of CleoSmashYa, the Shotgun Sheilas, and all the incredible action Fountain City Roller Derby has to offer throughout the year, join us on Instagram, follow us on Twitter, and check out our photo albums on Smugmug.