Friday, February 04, 2011

Rodd and Mark

(Astronaut Mark Kelly, husband of Congresswoman Giffords, addressing the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, DC.) Rodd McLeod, campaign manager for Gabrielle Giffords during her first run for Congress in 2006 and again in 2010, sent the following email message this evening to a list of her supporters. Some readers here may find it interesting.

As we approach the month anniversary of the shootings, I thought it fitting to offer a brief update on Gabby and Mark, and our extended Giffords family.

First of all, Ron Barber and Pam Simon continue to heal and improve.

Gabby is also improving steadily. Her warmth is evident and she quickly bonded with the medical staff at TIRR. She can sit up, smiles to greet people who come into her room, and she understands the nursing staff whether they speak to her in English or in Spanish. Gabby has a very long road ahead of her, with daily physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy. It is very hard work, but for Gabby, hard work is nothing new. We remain hopeful about her recovery, which continues on a steady upward trajectory. Her parents are with her now, and she is responding to their presence and to the love pouring in from across the country, especially from Arizona.

Mark spoke yesterday at the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, DC. Watch him deliver his remarks here.

Earlier today, NASA announced that Mark will rejoin the STS 134 space shuttle crew that is scheduled to launch on April 19th. Gabby has always been a strong supporter of Mark's work for NASA and our country. Mark and his crew have trained for the past 18 months. We believe that his commanding this mission is the right thing to do.

Those of you in Tucson may have noticed that the memorials at Safeway and at UMC have begun to be taken down. The University of Arizona is working on collecting and archiving the gifts and well-wishes from so many people, which may be reflected in a permanent memorial. Many of you have visited these sites regularly, and your support and prayers have been invaluable. As these sites are taken down, please consider spending some time volunteering at your favorite charity.

Sincerely yours,

Rodd McLeod
Campaign Manager, 2010

Mark Kelly concluded his address at the National Prayer Breakfast by reading the prayer that Rabbi Stephanie Aaron, the Congresswoman's Rabbi who married them, said over Gabrielle's hospital bed that first night after the shooting, when she was still in a coma and fighting for her life:

In the name of God, our God of Israel, may Michael, God's angel messenger of compassion, watch over your right side. May Gabriel, God's angel messenger of strength and courage, be on your left. And before you, guiding your path, Muriel, God's angel of light, and behind you supporting you stands Raphael, God's angel of healing, and over your head, surrounding you, is the presence of the divine.


Anonymous Another Anon said...

For obvious reasons, those surrounding our beloved Gabby are guarding her image carefully. I hope Mark understands the Higher Power who has Gabby in His/Her hands and that he opens his heart to that Higher Power (I call Him/Her God, but ...).
Continue to pray, hope, wish the best for Gabby.

2/06/2011 9:26 PM  

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