biography center image
Home Suggest a Biography Forum Contact
Browse by Alphabet Most Popular Highest Rated   back to  search
Browse by Letter : A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Mary Lou Retton ( 1968 - )  Category ( Athletes ) [suggest a correction]

Mary Lou RettonMary Lou Retton, Olympic all-around female gymnast, was born 24 January 1968 in Fairmont, West Virginia. Initially inspired by watching gymnast Nadia Comaneci on television, Retton took up gymnastics in her hometown. She then moved to Houston, Texas to trun under the Romanians, Bela and Marta Karolyi, who had coached Nadia Comaneci before their defection to the United States. Under their tutelage, Retton began to make a name for herself in the U.S.

Retton began to win awards in 1983, but suffered a knee injury in 1984 when she performed a floor routine at a local gymnastics center. She sat down to sign autographs when she felt he knee lock. She underwent surgery and recovered in time to enter the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. Retton scored perfect tens in floor exercise and vault to win the all-around title by .05 points.

She also won a silver in team competition and the horse vault and a vronze in floor exercise and uneven bars. She was named Sports Illustrated magazine's "Sportswoman of the Year," she appeared on a Wheaties cereal box and became the cereal's first official spokeswoman. Retton retired from gymnastics after winning an unprecedented third American Cup title in 1985.

Retton's health constituted one reason why she quit gymnastics so early. Retton was born with hip dysplasia, a condition that was aggravated by her years as a competitive gymnast. After experiencing increased pain she had hip replacement surgery on her left hip in her mid-30s. She also suffered from an overactive bladder and arthritis. She serves as a paid spokesperson for Biomet and for Pfizer to publicize treatment for these conditions.

Retton now lives in Houston, and she is married to Shannon Kelley, a real estate developer. She has four daughters who were born between 1995 and 2002. Retton was elected to the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame in 1992 (she is of Italian descent), and she was inducted into the International Gynmastics Hall of Fame in 1997. A street and a park in her hometown are named after her, as well as a skill set on the uneven bars called "The Retton Flip."

Image: A portrait of Mary Lou Retton as a member of the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports.

starstarstarstarstarstarstarstarstarstar    Rating  0
Rating [Comment on this link]
starstarstarstarstarstarstarstarstarstar    Rating  0
Rating [Comment on this link]
starstarstarstarstarstarstarstarstarstar    Rating  0
Rating [Comment on this link]
[Suggest another Link for this biography]
Browse by categories
Biographies beginning with
Biographes by Category
Most popular biographies
Most rated biographies
View all categories
Browse by categories
arrow Suggest an addtional category for Retton Mary Lou
arrow Suggest a Biography
arrow Add details to this biogaphy
© Copyright 1998-2024 Biography Center