A fundraising effort for Mary Lou Retton, the American gymnast who became a sports icon when she won Olympic gold in 1984, has reached its goal as she continues to battle a very rare form of pneumonia, according to her daughter.
Retton, 55, has been hospitalized in the intensive care unit for over one week and is “not able to breathe on her own,” Retton’s daughter, McKenna Kelley, shared on Instagram this week.
Kelley, one of Retton’s four daughters and a gymnast who competed for Louisiana State University, linked to a fundraising page for her mom, whom she said is not insured.
“We ask that if you could help in any way, that 1) you PRAY! and 2) if you could help us with finances for the hospital bill,” Kelley wrote on the fundraising page. “ANYTHING, absolutely anything, would be so helpful for my family and my mom.”
As of Wednesday morning, the page had exceeded its stated $50,000 goal and had raised nearly $175,000 and counting.
Kelley did not share further details on her mother’s condition or the health battle she is facing, writing, “Out of respect for her and her privacy, I will not disclose all details.”
Retton is most famous for her performance in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, where she scored a series of perfect 10s to become the first American to win an Olympic individual all-round gold, according to her official Olympics biography.
In 2018, Retton competed on season 27 of ABC’s dancing competition show, Dancing with the Stars.
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