Rep. Giffords returns to Tucson

June 18, 2011 at 12:44 AM

TUCSON, June 18 (UPI) -- U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., Friday made her first trip back to Tucson since being shot in the head at a constituents event five months ago.

The congresswoman, who was released this week from the Houston hospital where she has been rehabilitating, is not expected to make any public appearances, The Arizona Republic reported her communications director, C.J. Karamargin, said. Giffords will spend her time in Tucson with her family.

"We've been dreaming of this trip for some time," her husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, said in a statement. "Gabby misses Tucson very much, and her doctors have said that returning to her hometown could play an important role in her recovery. It is sure to be very emotional."

Gifford has made a remarkable comeback from the gunshot wound that nearly took her life Jan. 8. She was one of 19 people who were shot outside a Tucson supermarket. Six people died. The alleged shooter, Jared Loughner, is in custody awaiting a determination whether he is mentally fit to stand trial.

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