Mattress Mack Gives Massive Donation To Mary Lou Retton ICU Fundraiser

By Jason Hall

October 12, 2023

Photo: Getty Images

Businessman Jim 'Mattress Mack' McIngvale and his wife, Linda, donated $50,000 to a fundraiser for Olympic gold medal gymnast Mary Lou Retton as she battles "a very rare form of pneumonia."

Linda McIngvale is listed as the top donor on the Spotfund page launched by Retton's daughter, former LSU gymnast McKenna Kelley, matching the initial $50,000 goal that has been exceeded by more than $300,000 in total donations.

"We followed Mary Lou since her career in Houston," Jim McIngvale told TMZ Sports. "My wife and I have always been a huge support of Béla and Márta Károlyi's gymnastics team. My son worked out with them on the team for years, my daughter did as well.

"Mary Lou was always a shining point of light, as George Bush would say, and we pray for Mary Lou's recovery and the $50,000 is the least we could do to help an American icon get better."

Kelley, 26, announced her mother was "fighting for her life" in the Spotfund fundraiser launched on Tuesday (October 10).

"My amazing mom, Mary Lou, has a very rare form of pneumonia and is fighting for her life. She is not able to breathe on her own. She’s been in the ICU for over a week now," Kelley wrote. "Out of respect for her and her privacy, I will not disclose all details. However, I will disclose that she 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.

"ANYTHING, absolutely anything, would be so helpful for my family and my mom. Thank y’all so very much!"

Retton, 55, is one of the most decorated American gymnasts in history, having won five medals at the 1984 Los Angeles Summer Olympics, which included becoming the first American woman to win the individual all-around competition. The West Virginia native appeared in several film and television show and served as an ambassador to the sport, as well as the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports during former President George W. Bush's administration, following the conclusion of her gymnastics career.

McIngvale, 72, who gets his nickname from his popular Houston based furniture store, has gained notoriety for his large sports betting wagers in recent years, which included winning the reported largest legal bet in U.S. sports betting history after placing $3 million on the Astros to win the 2022 World Series at 10-1 odds at Caesars Sportsbook, which resulted in an approximately $75 million payout, ESPN reported at the time.

Advertise With Us
Music, radio and podcasts, all free. Listen online or download the iHeart App.


© 2024 iHeartMedia, Inc.