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Woman with no arms goes for black belt

By Matthew K. Roy
Staff writer

PEABODY — Sheila Radziewicz has been beating the odds since birth.

"I was not supposed to live," she said. "Then I wasn't ever supposed to walk."

Because of a congenital birth defect, she was born without arms. She also came into the world without kneecaps and with her feet rotated in, toward each other.

She endured multiple surgeries as a young girl, all aimed at helping her walk. Until she was in junior high, Radziewicz had to wear metal braces that stopped at the top of her thigh, similar to the ones the character Forrest Gump wore in the movie.

Today, Radziewicz, 32, is not only walking, she is kicking. And next month she will test for her black belt in taekwondo.

Reaching such heights in the realm of martial arts is laudable for anyone. For Radziewicz to do it is nearly a miracle.

"I grew up with the phrase, 'The impossible only


Added: May-4-2010 Occurred On: May-4-2010
By: gregory_peckory
Tags: taekwondo, black belt, no arms, woman, birth defect
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