Entries in Gabby Giffords (5)


Gabrielle Giffords, Mark Kelly to Appear at Loughner Sentencing

Valerie Macon/Getty Images(TUCSON, Ariz.) -- A source close to former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and Shuttle Commander Mark Kelly tells ABC News exclusively that both Giffords and Kelly will be at the sentencing of Tucson gunman Jared Loughner Thursday.

It is expected that Kelly will make a statement in court on behalf of the couple with Giffords standing at his side.

This will be the first time the couple see Loughner in person.

On Jan. 8, 2011, Giffords was shot in the head while meeting constituents at an Arizona supermarket. In August 2012, Loughner pleaded guilty to the mass shooting that left six dead.

Giffords, who made a remarkable recovery, stepped down from the House in January 2012.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


NASA to Fly Space Shuttle Endeavour Over Tucson to Honor Gabby Giffords

NASA/ Robert Markowitz(HOUSTON) -- The space shuttle Endeavour is on a 2,700-mile cross-country trip. So you have to wonder why it couldn’t make one small detour -- especially at the request of former astronaut Mark Kelly, who commanded Endeavour’s last mission before it was retired.

Kelly’s wife, former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, was struggling to recover from an attempted assassination in Tucson early last year, and his mission to the International Space Station conflicted with her recovery, so his decision to command it was bittersweet, but he had been training for so long and had faith in the medical team treating his wife.

Endeavour is flying a victory lap across the South, taking off from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, dropping from 14,000 feet to 1,500 to circle historic locations in space shuttle history. The orbiter, on top of its 747 carrier plane, circled over Houston and the Johnson Space Center Wednesday. Endeavour will overnight in Houston, then head to El Paso, where it will refuel, then arrive in Los Angeles late in the week. It is to go on permanent display at the California Science Center.

Mark Kelly’s request for Endeavour to make a detour and fly over Tucson, so Giffords could see it one last time, doesn’t take it that far out of the way, especially when the idea is for it to be seen anyhow.

The last-minute suggestion was a bit of a surprise to NASA, but late in the day it put out a statement saying it would honor Kelly’s request.

“As part of the delivery of Endeavour to Los Angeles, Endeavour will be flown over the city of Tucson,” said the agency.  “NASA decided to honor that request to pay our respects to a long-time agency supporter in former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and Kelly, who commanded Endeavour’s final mission, STS-134. The flight over Tucson will add no additional time or cost to the delivery of Endeavour.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Gabby Giffords Leads Pledge of Allegiance at DNC

Alex Wong/Getty Images(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) -- Former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, whose political career was cut short when she was shot in the head by a gunman at a constituent event on Jan. 8, 2011, took the stage at the Democratic National Convention Thursday night to lead the crowd in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

With her longtime friend and colleague, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., by her side, Giffords, in black slacks and a white jacket, fought her way through the oath in a spirited but at times slurred voice, as conventioneers, some in tears, joined her before exploding into applause.

She walked haltingly off with the stage with Wasserman Schultz aiding her progress, but all the time flashing a broad smile as supporters stayed on their feet, chanting "Gabby! Gabby!" and, "Fired Up! Ready to go!" during a prolonged ovation.

"Ok, now Gabby Giffords just made me cry," Newark Mayor Cory Booker tweeted from the floor. "What a testimony to strength, resilience, perseverance and beauty!"

Rumors that the former Tucson, Ariz., congresswoman, who was shot in the head during a constituent event, would appear at the Charlotte convention began to spread Wednesday afternoon, but were only confirmed Wednesday night by a spokeswoman.

It's been a busy month for Giffords and her husband, the astronaut Mark Kelly. On Tuesday, they revealed the formation of a political action committee called Gabby PAC.

On Aug. 13, after 17 months at a rehab facility in Houston, Giffords moved back to Tucson, where she continues therapy.

Giffords resigned from Congress in late January.

 Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Rep. Gabrielle Giffords Given Details of Tucson Shooting Rampage

P.K. Weis/Giffords Campaign/Getty Images(TUCSON, Ariz.) -- The horrible details of the Jan. 8 shooting spree near Tucson, Ariz., have now been revealed to Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, according to her spokesman, C.J. Karamargin.

Giffords knew that six people had died in the rampage, but her family, staff and friends wanted to wait until she had recovered enough from her own gunshot wound to the head before telling her that among the dead are her close friend U.S. District Judge John Roll, 9-year-old Christina-Taylor Green, and her loyal aide Gabe Zimmerman.

While Giffords apparently did not remember the shooting, which occurred while Giffords was meeting with constituents outside of a Safeway grocery store, Kelly said that she is now beginning to cope with the tragedy.

Giffords received the news in late July, a few days before her surprise visit to Capitol Hill on Aug. 1 to vote on the federal debt ceiling.

Since finding out, Giffords called Zimmerman's father, Ross Zimmerman, to express her condolences.

"She still has some trouble with language, but there is no question that she can get her point across and her comprehension is 100 percent," Zimmerman told The Arizona Republic. "It was Gabrielle -- it was nice to talk to her."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


New York Legislators Threatened With Attack, Another 'Gabby Giffords'

Daniel Barry/Getty Images(ALBANY, N.Y.) -- New York state police have opened a "full-blown" investigation into an e-mail threat against state senators and assemblymen from a writer who asks, "Give me a chance to pull a Gabby Giffords."

The reference to the shooting of the Arizona Congresswoman has alarmed officials in Albany, where a state budget that could result in layoffs of employees passed early Thursday morning.

A state police spokeswoman said the e-mail, with the subject line "Time to Kill," was sent to "many" of the state's senators and assembly members and is regarded as much more than a sick April Fool's Day joke.

"We are fully investigating but I cannot provide any more details at this time," said Trooper Maureen Tuffey, the spokeswoman for Troop G of the state police, which covers Albany.

In the e-mail, first reported by ABC affiliate WTEN-TV, the writer says, "News reporters, politicians and the wealthy are all going to be targets."

The message was sent from someone using the e-mail address

"I personally am going to use my position and contacts in State government to gather information about the vulnerabilities of public and private targets in New York," the writer said.

The state police spokeswoman would not comment on whether security had been enhanced for leaders of the legislature.

"If we attack a school bus full of kids, it may have no effect on the hardened criminals who rule Albany, but it will put the public in an uproar. Our goal is to create anarchy. You'll have to kill us to stop us," the message read.

The writer refers to "one legislator who should immediately recognize" the author because they spoke three years ago and "I spoke to him in person and warned him about these very topics, including the school attacks."

In a chilling final paragraph, the writer warns: "I bet he wasn't paying attention. We're going to get his attention. Come visit my agency. Give me a chance to pull a Gabby Giffords."

"The writer fits the profile of someone who has come to feel the government is illegitimate and he has to take action about it," said former FBI profiler Brad Garrett, an ABC News consultant.

"He seems like someone who may have been marginalized in his job, angry at his bosses and perhaps passed over for promotion," said the former agent. "Obviously, this has to be taken seriously, but usually people who plan to do this don't talk about, they just do it."

Copyight 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio