Olympic gymnastics icon Mary Lou Retton said Monday she is preparing for a "long and slow" recovery in her first public comments after suffering a rare form of pneumonia.
Retton, the 1984 Olympics all-around gold medalist, was discharged from hospital earlier this month after her family revealed she had been "fighting for her life" at an undisclosed medical facility.
In a statement on Instagram on Monday, Retton thanked well-wishers who had sent messages of support.
"I'm beyond blessed to have the opportunity to make this statement," she wrote.
"I am overwhelmed with all the love and support from the world as I fight. I am forever grateful to you all.
"I'm with family continuing to slowly recover and staying very positive as I know this recovery is a long and slow process.
"I appreciate everyone's respect for my privacy at this time."
Retton's daughter McKenna Kelley revealed on October 10 that her mother was seriously ill in intensive care, unable to breathe unassisted.
Last week Kelley said the former gymnast was back at home and "in recovery mode."
Retton became one of the faces of the 1984 Olympics with dazzling performances that earned her the all-around gold, as well as two silver medals and two bronze.
The then teenager from West Virginia clinched her gold after a thrilling battle with Romania's Ecaterina Szabo.
Retton's win made her the first woman from outside Eastern Europe to win the Olympic all-around gold.