Entries in rRep. Gabrielle Giffords (6)


Congresswoman Giffords to Begin Full-Course Rehab 

Photo Courtesy - POOL PHOTO by Greg Bryan, Arizona Daily Star (HOUSTON) -- Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was transferred to TIRR Memorial Hermann, a Houston rehabilitation center in Houston, for the next phase of her recovery.

“The congresswoman has done very well in her therapy sessions in the ICU,” said Dr. Gerard Francisco, chief medical officer of TIRR . “It will be good to have her at TIRR Memorial Hermann where we can devote more time to her rehabilitation and recovery.”

Dr. Francisco is one of the nation’s leading physicians in the field of brain injury and stroke rehabilitation. A frequent lecturer nationally and internationally, he is currently conducting research on the use of botulinum toxin and intrathecal baclofen for the treatment of spasticity, along with the use of robots to facilitate recovery after a stroke or spinal cord injury.

Giffords started rehabilitation in the Memorial Hermann-TMC Neuro-trauma intensive care unit (ICU) on January 21, when she was flown from Arizona to Houston, and then brought by Life Flight helicopter to the hospital’s level one trauma center.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Nine-Year-Old Arizona Shooting Victim's Organs Donated

Photo Courtesy - The Green Family/ ABC News/Handout(BOSTON) -- The organs of nine-year-old Christina-Taylor Green, the youngest victim of last week's shootings in Tucson, Arizona, have been donated to a Boston-area child, her father revealed to The Boston Globe.

The Globe reported Sunday that John Green told the newspaper that he received a phone call about the transplant, but does not know any further details about who received his little girl's organs, or at which hospital.

A spokesman for the New England Organ Bank told The Globe he is unable to comment on donations.

Green told The Globe that the news that his daughter's organs were able to save the life of another child "really lifted" his spirits, and he and her mother, Roxanna Green, are proud of Christina, "who has done another amazing thing."

CNN reports that when asked if he would like to meet the young girl who received his daughter's organs, John Green said yes, he would.

"I'd give her a big hug. It's a blessing," Green said.

Christina-Taylor Green, who was born on Sept. 11, 2001, was one of six people killed when Jared Loughner, 22, allegedly opened fire at a "Congress on Your Corner" event at a Tucson Safeway grocery store.  She was waiting to meet Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona when she was shot.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


President Obama to Honor Tucson Shooting Victims

Photo Courtesy - The White House/ Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) -- In times of crisis and tragedy, Americans have turned to their president for leadership and words of reassurance.   At a memorial service Wednesday night in Tucson, Arizona, President Obama will try to help the nation make sense of a tragic shooting that took the lives of six innocent victims.

On Monday, Obama urged Americans to focus on the stories of bravery that came out of last Saturday's shooting, saying they speak to "the best of America, even in the face of such mindless violence."

"I think it's going to be important, I think, for the country as a whole, as well as the people of Arizona, to feel as if we are speaking directly to our sense of loss," the president said Monday at the White House, "but also speaking to our hopes for the future and how out of this tragedy we can come together as a stronger nation."

Obama is expected to focus on the victims, heroes and those in Tucson that have been impacted by the tragedy.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Tucson Shooting: Woman Who Brought Slain 9-Year-Old Screams in Sleep

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(TUCSON, Ariz.) -- The woman who brought 9-year-old Christina-Taylor Green to the event where she was fatally shot has been screaming out from her hospital bed, "Christina! Christina! Let's get out of here!"

Suzie Heilman, who is recovering from multiple gunshot wounds, had been holding hands with Christina-Taylor as they waited in line to meet Rep. Gabrielle Giffords Saturday when alleged gunman Jared Loughner opened fire, husband Bill Heilman said.

"Suzie had been looking for an event they could share together.... Gabby's event made all kinds of was a magnificent chance to provide a positive female role model for little Christina."

Heilman was one of more than 20 people shot during Saturday's massacre, and Christina-Taylor is one of six who died. Giffords is believed to have been the target of the shooting.

Heilman said his wife's account of what happened during the shooting is not all coherent because she is under a "morphine-induced haze" as she heals from three gunshot wounds.

Christina-Taylor had recently been elected a member of her elementary school's student council and had an intense interest in politics. Her mother, Roxanna Green, told ABC News that her daughter was excited to go to the event because she wanted to "learn more about the political process."

Heilman, who has been friends with the Green family for more than four years and considered Christina-Taylor and her brother, Dallas, to be their unofficial grandchildren, said the first thing his wife asked when she was able to talk was, "What happened to Christina?"

Suzie Heilman is expected to make a full recovery.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Alleged Tucson Shooter to Make First Appearance in Federal Court Today

Photo Courtesy - Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images(PHOENIX) -- The suspect in Saturday's Tucson, Arizona shooting that left six people dead and Rep. Gabrielle Giffords critically injured is expected to be arraigned in federal court Monday.

The alleged gunman, Jared Loughner, is being tranferred 115 miles away from Tucson to Phoenix, where he will make his initial court appearance.  The 22-year-old will stand before U.S. Magistrate Judge Lawrence Anderson for the legal formality to make him aware of the five federal charges against him.

Loughner was charged with with one count of attempted assassination of a member of Congress, two counts of killing an employee of the United States and two counts of intent to kill employees of the United States.

Anderson was reappointed to the federal bench in 2006 in an order signed by U.S. District Judge John Roll, Arizona's chief federal judge.  Roll was among those killed in Saturday's shooting.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Jared Loughner Radically Changed Before Alleged Shooting, Friend Says

Photo Courtesy - Myspace(TUCSON, Ariz.) -- A longtime friend of Jared Lee Loughner, the suspect in custody following the murder of six people in an apparent assassination attempt on Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, said there was a mysterious, significant change in him a year before the shooting.

"He was a good person that just somehow changed so much," former classmate and friend Tong Shan told ABC News in an exclusive interview.  "I don't know what the hell happened to him."

When she heard news reports of Loughner's arrest in connection with the deadly attack, she said, "I was shocked, but I believed it was him."

According to court documents released Sunday, authorities discovered a safe in Loughner's home with a thank-you letter from Giffords for attending a Congress on Your Corner event in 2007 -- the same kind of event Loughner allegedly assaulted Saturday.  Another envelope said "I planned ahead," "My assassination" and "Giffords" and bore what appears to be Loughner's signature, the documents said.

Shan said she became friends with Loughner the day the two graduated from high school and also had class together at Pima Community College in 2007.  She said the two would hang out often after class but lost touch after the semester ended until they reconnected in the summer of 2010 when, Shan said, Loughner acted radically different.

"I don't know what might have caused him to change, but from the way he was talking to me [online]... you can see.  It was just questions and questions and random, weird questions that didn't go together," she said.  "He wanted to know everything... He would just trip out."

Said Shan, "I don't know why it didn't jump out at me, like, 'Hey, something's wrong."

Shan last spoke to Loughner in October, after he was suspended and dropped out of college and before he purchased a semi-automatic handgun from a gun shop in Tucson.  But she said while Loughner was "anti-government," he was never violent and never mentioned plans to buy a gun.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio