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Wednesday
Jan122011

Gabrielle Giffords' Husband Keeps Vigil By Her Side

Photo Courtesy - Office of U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords(TUCSON, Ariz.) -- Critically wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords is making a remarkably strong recovery, her doctors said Tuesday.  Despite the good news, however, a photo of her husband holding her hand while keeping an exhausted vigil by her side clearly showed the agony of the ordeal for her family.

Giffords' doctors were upbeat Tuesday on her chance of surviving the shot to her head on Saturday.

"She has a 101 percent chance of surviving," said trauma chief Dr. Peter Rhee said Tuesday. "She will not die. She does not have that permission from me."

While Giffords' breathing tube remained in place, her neurosurgeon Dr. Michael Lemole said she is breathing on her own for the first time since the shooting.

Doctors added that Giffords is also moving both arms. Two days ago they were delighted that she could raise two fingers and squeeze a hand.

The doctors corrected themselves on one aspect of the wound. They now believe she was shot in the forehead, with the bullet traveling the length of the left side of the brain and exiting the back. They originally believed she was shot in the back of the head and the bullet exited her forehead.

Giffords' husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, has been by her side since shortly after she was shot on Saturday, allegedly by 22-year-old Jared Lee Loughner.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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