Mary Lou Retton Net Worth 2023, Age, Husband, Children, Family, Parents, Salary, Height

Mary Lou Retton net worth

Read about Mary Lou Retton net worth, age, husband, children, height, family, parents, salary, and career as well as other information you need to know.


Mary Lou Retton is an American retired gymnast. At the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, she won a gold medal in the individual all-around competition, as well as two silver medals and two bronze medals. Her performance made her one of the most popular athletes in the United States. Her gold medal win was historic as Retton was the first American woman to win the all-around gold medal in Olympic gymnastics.

Retton’s routine on the uneven bars included a move that came to be called “The Retton Flip”. This consisted of a transition (front flip) from low- to high bar, resulting in the gymnast perched or “sitting” on top of the high bar. This move, and many others like it, were removed from the Code of Points of artistic gymnastics due to old-style “belly beat” moves having ceased to be used in bar competitions.

Early life

NameMary Lou Retton
Net Worth$2 million
OccupationRetired gymnast
Age55 years
Mary Lou Retton’s net worth

Mary Lou Retton was born on January 24, 1968 (age 55 years) in Fairmont, West Virginia, United States. Her father, Ronnie, operated a coal-industry transportation equipment business. She attended Fairmont Senior High School but did not graduate. She competed in the 1984 Olympic games in Los Angeles, California, during her sophomore year of high school.


Mary Lou Retton was inspired by watching Nadia Comăneci outshine defending Olympic two-event winner Olga Korbut on television at the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal when she herself was eight years of age, and she took up gymnastics in her hometown of Fairmont, West Virginia. She was coached by Gary Rafaloski. She then decided to move to Houston, Texas, to train under Romanians Béla and Márta Károlyi, who had coached Nadia Comăneci before their defection to the United States.

Retton began to make a name for herself in the U.S. under Károlyis, winning the American Cup in 1983 and placing second to Dianne Durham (another Károlyi student) at the US Nationals that same year. Though Retton missed the World Gymnastics Championships in 1983 due to a wrist injury, she won the American Classic in 1983 and 1984, as well as Japan’s Chunichi Cup in 1983.

After winning her second American Cup, the U.S. Nationals, and the U.S. Olympic Trials in 1984, Retton suffered a knee injury when she was performing a floor routine at a local gymnastics center at the time. She had sat down to sign autographs when she felt her knee lock, forcing her to undergo an operation five weeks prior to the 1984 Summer Olympics, which were going to be held in Los Angeles—the first time the Summer Olympics had been held in the United States in 52 years.

She recovered just in time for this most prestigious of tournaments, and in the competition, which was boycotted by the Soviet bloc nations except for Romania, Retton was engaged in a close battle with Ecaterina Szabo of Romania for the all-around gold medal. Trailing Szabo (after uneven bars and balance beam) by 0.15 with two events to go, Retton scored perfect 10s on floor exercise and vault—the last event in an especially dramatic fashion, as there had been fears that her knee injury and the subsequent surgery might impair her performance.

Mary Lou Retton won the all-around gold medal by 0.05 points, beating Szabo to become the first female gymnast from outside Eastern Europe to win the individual all-around gold. She also became the first American woman to be an Olympic all-around champion – an honor she held alone until the ongoing five-peat of American all-around champions (in order: Carly Patterson in 2004 in Athens, Nastia Liukin in 2008 in Beijing, Gabby Douglas in 2012 in London, Simone Biles in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro and Suni Lee in 2021 in Tokyo).

At the same Olympics, Retton won four additional medals: silver in the team competition and the horse vault, and bronze in the floor exercise and uneven bars. For her performance, she was named Sports Illustrated Magazine’s “Sportswoman of the Year.” She appeared on a Wheaties box and became the cereal’s first official spokeswoman. In 1985, Retton won the American Cup all-around competition for the third and final time. Mary Lou Retton retired in 1986.

Mary Lou Retton was an outspoken supporter of the Reagan administration and appeared in a variety of television ads supporting Ronald Reagan as well as appearing at a rally for his reelection campaign just a month after the Olympics in her home state of West Virginia. Retton delivered the Pledge of Allegiance with fellow former gymnast and 1996 Olympic gold medalist Kerri Strug on the second night of the 2004 Republican National Convention.

Retton’s hometown, Fairmont, West Virginia, named a road and a park in the town after her. Having retired from gymnastics after winning an unprecedented third American Cup title in 1985, as noted above, she later had cameo appearances as herself in Scrooged and Naked Gun 33+1⁄3: The Final Insult. In 1985, she received the Golden Plate Award of the American Academy of Achievement presented by Awards Council member General Chuck Yeager.

Retton was elected to the National Italian-American Sports Hall of Fame in 1992. In 1993, the Associated Press released results of a sports study in which Retton was statistically tied for first place with fellow Olympian Dorothy Hamill as the most popular athlete in America. In 1997, Retton was inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame.

In January 2020, Mary Lou Retton was the first woman inducted into the Houston Sports Hall of Fame. During the 1990s, Retton worked as a spokeswoman, appearing in advertisements for the U.S. drugstore chain Revco. Mary Lou Retton has many commercial endorsements, including bowling and shampoo.

She was the first female athlete to be pictured on the front of a Wheaties box, and General Mills stated that Wheaties sales improved after her appearance. In 2019, Retton became a spokesperson for Australian Dream, a pain relief cream. She is a frequent analyst for televised gymnastics and attended The University of Texas at Austin after the Olympics.

Retton was thrust back into the spotlight when the USA Gymnastics sex abuse scandal hit the news in 2016. When the Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act of 2017 was introduced to the 115th Congress, she and other members of USA Gymnastics met with the bill sponsor, Senator Dianne Feinstein, with the aim of convincing her to drop the bill. Despite these efforts, on February 14, 2018, the Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act of 2017 was signed into law and became effective immediately.

Health issues

Mary Lou Retton was born with hip dysplasia, a condition that her years as a competitive gymnast aggravated. After experiencing increased pain from the condition, she underwent hip replacement surgery on her left hip in her mid-thirties. Retton lived in Houston, Texas, until 2009, when her family returned to West Virginia. She moved back to Houston in 2012. On October 10, 2023, Retton’s daughter said on social media that her mother was critically ill with a rare form of pneumonia.


Mary Lou Retton was married to former University of Texas quarterback and Houston real estate developer Shannon Kelley, who now works for the Houston Baptist University athletic department. Together they have four daughters: Shayla (born 1995), McKenna (born 1997), Skyla (born 2000), and Emma (born 2002). McKenna was a NCAA gymnast at Louisiana State University and Emma is an NCAA gymnast at the University of Arkansas. She divorced her husband Kelly in February 2018.

Mary Lou Retton net worth

How much is Mary Lou Retton worth? Mary Lou Retton net worth is estimated at around $2 million. Her main source of income is from her primary work as a retired gymnast. Mary Lou Retton’s salary per month and other career earnings are over $230,000 dollars annually. Her remarkable achievements have earned her some luxurious lifestyles and some fancy car trips. She is one of the richest and influential retired gymnasts in the United States. She stands at an appealing height of 1.45m and has a good body weight which suits her personality.