Saturday, June 15, 2024

Mary Lou Retton Responds to Criticism of Her Crowdfunded Medical Expenses

Mary Lou Retton addresses backlash over medical fundraiser for daughters

Mary Lou Retton, the retired Olympic gymnast, is speaking out against trolls who criticized her daughters for starting a crowdsourcing fund to pay her medical bills. In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, Retton, 56, defended her daughters, stating, “They didn’t deserve that. They were just trying to take care of me. I don’t care about the naysayers. There are trolls everywhere.”

Retton, who spent two weeks in the ICU battling a rare form of pneumonia in October 2023, explained that her financial situation suffered after her 2018 divorce from Shannon Kelley and the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. With speaking engagements slowing down, she found it challenging to make ends meet.

Her daughters, Shayla, 28, McKenna, 26, Skyla, 23, and Emma, 21, set up a fundraising campaign that surpassed its initial $50,000 goal. Despite some fans questioning the family’s need for financial assistance, Retton assured that all funds would go towards her medical bills or to the American Lung Association.

Currently on oxygen and facing a long recovery, Retton expressed frustration with the limitations on her work as a speaker. However, she remains grateful for her daughters’ support, calling them her biggest accomplishments.

Retton’s story is a reminder of the love and resilience within families, as well as the challenges many face in navigating unexpected health crises.

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