Gymnastics icon Mary Lou Retton, known for more than just her physical prowess, experienced a meaningful life event when she got divorced. Retton, who gained notoriety for her ground-breaking performance in the 1984 Olympics, saw her personal life change once her marriage ended.
The famous gymnast’s story gains a human element despite being a private matter—her divorce. Retton is an inspiration both inside and outside of the gymnastics arena because of her tenacity, grit, and accomplishments that go beyond the gymnastics mat to highlight the complexity of her life and the difficulties she overcame.
Mary Lou Retton Divorce
Mary Lou Retton, the renowned American gymnast, and her spouse, Shannon Kelly, divorced in 2018. After being married on December 29, 1990, the pair divorced 27 years later.
Former college football player Shannon Kelly played quarterback for the University of Texas. In addition, he was a real estate developer. Currently, he works for Houston Baptist University’s sports department as an offensive assistant coach. When discussing her split with Shannon Kelly a few years prior, Mary Lou Retton stated:
“It’s something that had really needed to happen for a long time. We still love one another, but we weren’t great together anymore.”
Shayla Schrepfer (age 28), McKenna Kelley (age 26), Skyla Kelley (age 23), and Emma Kelly (age 21) are the couple’s four daughters. Years after they first crossed paths at Baylor University, their oldest daughter Shyala wed Wyatt Schrepfer in January 2020.
Lou Retton’s four daughters participated in gymnastics as children, in school or college, following in their mother’s footsteps. None of them, though, represented their country or competed at the top levels in the sport.
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Who is Mary Lou Retton’s Ex-husband, Shannon Kelley?
Shannon Kelley and Mary Lou Retton were wed for over 25 years. Similar to Retton, Kelley is well-known for his athletic career. He is a college coach who was once a quarterback in football.
Between 1984 and 1988, Kelley attended the University of Texas to play college football. He earned a bachelor’s degree in communications while playing football and making three bowl appearances.
After earning his master’s in business administration from the University of St. Thomas, he worked for a while as a partner in a real estate development company and investment firm.
After that, the former All-American quarterback coach went back to his hometown of Fairmont State University to work with quarterbacks. Since then, he has played for the Houston Christian University Huskies and Pennsylvania Western University Blazes. Due to his tendency to avoid the spotlight, Kelley’s personal life is still unknown in further depth.
Who is Mary Lou Retton?
Retton is well-known for her work as a gymnast, in addition to being Kelley’s ex-wife. She became prominent in 1983 after winning the American Cup, a feat she repeated in 1984 and 1985. The following year, she competed for Team USA at the Olympic Games held in Los Angeles, California.
The West Virginia native from Fairmont won five medals at the games, making history as the first American to win an Olympic gold medal in individual all-around competition. Retton also won bronze in the uneven bars and floor events and silver in the vault and team competition.
Retton worked in television after retiring in September 1986 and has led a quiet life ever since. She has ultimately avoided the spotlight, but it was made public in October 2023 that she was admitted to the hospital while suffering from an uncommon case of pneumonia.