Olympic Gold Medalist Mary Lou Retton Battles Rare Pneumonia in ICU

FAIRMONT, WV – Mary Lou Retton, the celebrated U.S. gymnast and Olympic gold medalist, is currently fighting a rare form of pneumonia in an intensive care unit, according to her daughter, McKenna Kelley. Retton, who has been in the ICU for over a week, is struggling to breathe independently.

Retton, 55, is a revered figure in the world of American gymnastics. Her most notable accomplishments trace back to the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, where she made history by becoming the first American woman to win a gold medal in the individual all-around competition. In the same year, she also secured two silver and two bronze medals, earning her the title of Sportsperson of the Year by Sports Illustrated.

Kelley shared the news of her mother’s health condition through a spotfund account, describing it as a fight for life due to the uncommon pneumonia Retton has contracted. While she refrained from divulging further details out of respect for her mother’s privacy, Kelley did reveal that Retton does not have insurance coverage. She ended her post with a heartfelt request for prayers for her mother.

After retiring from her successful gymnastics career, Retton transitioned into the entertainment industry, making appearances in several films and TV shows. She also served on the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports during George W. Bush’s presidency.

Retton’s contributions to gymnastics have been widely recognized. She was inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame in 1997 and became the first woman to be inducted into the Houston Sports Hall of Fame in 2020. She was also inducted into the National Italian-American Sports Hall of Fame in 1992. In her hometown of Fairmont, West Virginia, Retton’s achievements are commemorated with a street and park named in her honor.

As Retton continues her battle against this rare pneumonia, her family and fans around the world are rallying behind her, hoping for a swift recovery. Her legacy in the world of gymnastics and her contributions to American sports continue to inspire many.