Kelly Ryan was considered one of the best fitness competitors in the world. She was coined “Fly’n Ryan” for her ability to soar during her fitness routines. She was the 1995 NPC South Carolina Champion and at the 1998 NPC Team Universe/Fitness Nationals she achieve IFBB Pro status by winning not only the short class but also the overall crown. She was the Fitness International champion in 2000 but never finished higher than second at the Fitness Olympia. She graced the cover of Oxygen, IRONMAN and many other fitness magazines.
We’ll never know if Kelly could have or would have won the Fitness Olympia or returned to the first place position at the Fitness International. Kelly is currently serving a 6 to 26 year prison term at the Florence McClure Women’s Correctional Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. She pleaded guilty to arson and Nevada’s equivalent of no contest to battery with a deadly weapon.
Kelly and her then husband (Kelly has since filed for and divorced) Craig Titus were sentenced to prison on August 22, 2008 for the slaying of Melissa James. James’ charred body was found in December 2005 in the trunk of Ryan’s burned-out Jaguar sedan in the desert outside Las Vegas. Craig plead guilty to second-degree murder, kidnapping and arson. He was sentenced to 21 to 55 years.
Kelly’s parole hearing was on September 22, 2011 and received word in December that her request for parole had been denied. She will have to wait another three years before she’s eligible for parole again.
The James’ family has to be slightly relieved at this news however nothing will bring Melissa back. For more information on this story you can check out some of the previous posts over the years.
Parts of this story were from the 2008 Associated Press.