Rep. Gabrielle Giffords Plans to Attend Husband Mark Kelly's Shuttle Launch

VDIEO: Rep. Giffords Plans to Attend Husbands Launch
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Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, just two months after receiving a gunshot wound to the head, plans to attend next month's launch of the space shuttle Endeavour piloted by her astronaut husband, Mark Kelly.

Arrangements are being made to host Giffords in the family viewing area at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., for the April 19 launch, sources told ABC News.

"It is a goal that we are working towards," said CJ Karamargin, a Giffords spokesman, "and we certainly hope that she will be there."

It is unlikely the public will see Giffords at the launch unless officials want her to be seen. NASA has kept the astronaut families far away from the media since the Challenger accident.

Giffords continues to recover at a Texas rehabilitation facility, where she was taken after she was shot in the head during an alleged assassination attempt in Tucson, Ariz., in January.

"We are very hopeful that Gabby can attend this historic launch," said her chief of staff, Pia Caruson. "Gabby is working hard every day and making remarkable progress, so chances are good that she'll be there."

The April 19 mission piloted by Kelly likely will be Endeavor's last and perhaps the last time any of the three remaining U.S. space shuttles will be sent to space.

It will be a complex 14-day mission with four spacewalks to install the alpha magnetic spectrometer, which will sift through cosmic rays to define the origins of the universe.

News of Giffords' attendance comes one day after Jared Loughner was arraigned on 49 new federal charges in an attack that killed six people and wounded 13 others at an event at a Tucson supermarket that the congresswoman was hosting.

Kelly remained at Giffords side for weeks after the shooting, but announced last month that his wife was recovering fast enough for him to pilot the shuttle.

He said, at the time, he believed his wife would want him to go to space.

ABC News' Polson Kanneth contributed to this report.

 
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