Giffords' husband hopes she'll be at April launch

Mar 24, 2011 By MARCIA DUNN , AP Aerospace Writer
In this Thursday, March 17, 2010 picture, Expedition 26 Commander Scott Kelly, left, is reunited with his twin brother, Mark Kelly following a flight back to Ellington Field in Houston from Kustanai, Kazakhstan. Scott Kelly landed in Kazakhstan on March 16 with his Russian crewmates in the Soyuz TMA-01M spacecraft after 159 days in space, 157 days on the International Space Station. Mark Kelly is in the final weeks of training as Commander of the final flight of Endeavour, STS-134, that will spend more than a week docked to the ISS. Endeavour is targeted for launch on April 19, 2011. (AP Photo/NASA, Rob Navias)

(AP) -- The astronaut husband of wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords said Thursday there's a "pretty good chance" she will attend his space shuttle launch next month.

"We still don't know for sure. I'm just awaiting final approval from her doctors," shuttle commander Mark Kelly told reporters at a news conference at NASA's Johnson Space Center.

Kelly said his wife, who is recovering from a gunshot wound to the head, is doing "remarkably well."

"She's improving every day - and in the realm of brain injuries that is very significant and pretty rare," he said. "She's starting to walk, talk more - more every day."

Giffords is also beginning to deal with the shooting at a Tucson, Ariz., shopping center in January, he said. "Despite that, she remains in a very good mood," he said.

Kelly spoke at the traditional preflight news conference for shuttle crews. Wearing a turquoise "Gabby" wristband, he spoke first, reading from a statement before the crew took questions. He said he wanted reporters to focus on the , not his wife's recovery.

He is the commander of NASA's next-to-last shuttle flight. is due to blast off for the final time April 19. The fleet is retiring after makes one last trip to the this summer.

Kelly quit training after his wife was shot while meeting with constituents. But a month later he decided to fly the two-week mission. At the time, he said he wanted his wife to attend the launch.

"She's been looking forward to this for a long time," he said Thursday.

Within two weeks of the shooting, Giffords was transferred to TIRR Memorial Hermann hospital in Houston. Kelly said he sees her every morning before work and at the end of the day.

Explore further: SDO captures images of two mid-level flares

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

NASA names backup for Giffords' husband on shuttle

Jan 13, 2011

(AP) -- NASA announced Thursday a backup commander, if necessary, to take the place of the astronaut-husband of U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was wounded in a mass slaying and recovering in a Tucson, ...

Astronaut twins reunited after 5 months apart

Mar 21, 2011

(AP) -- Astronaut Scott Kelly is back home reunited with his twin astronaut brother, after a five-month space station mission that was marred by the shooting of his congresswoman sister-in-law.

Husband: Giffords would be OK with flight decision

Feb 06, 2011

(AP) -- The astronaut husband of wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords said his wife would be "very comfortable" with his decision to go back into space and he expects her to be at his launch in April.

Giffords' astronaut hubby decision due Friday

Feb 04, 2011

(AP) -- The astronaut husband of wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords will announce Friday whether he'll fly on space shuttle Endeavour's final voyage - and all signs are go.

NASA chief: Giffords welcome at husband's launch

Feb 15, 2011

(AP) -- NASA's chief says it would be tremendous for the space shuttle crew and the nation if Rep. Gabrielle Giffords can watch her astronaut husband launch from Cape Canaveral in April.

Recommended for you

SDO captures images of two mid-level flares

Dec 19, 2014

The sun emitted a mid-level flare on Dec. 18, 2014, at 4:58 p.m. EST. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event. Solar flares are powerful bursts ...

Why is Venus so horrible?

Dec 19, 2014

Venus sucks. Seriously, it's the worst. The global temperature is as hot as an oven, the atmospheric pressure is 90 times Earth, and it rains sulfuric acid. Every part of the surface of Venus would kill you ...

Image: Christmas wrapping the Sentinel-3A antenna

Dec 19, 2014

The moment a team of technicians, gowned like hospital surgeons, wraps the Sentinel-3A radar altimeter in multilayer insulation to protect it from the temperature extremes found in Earth orbit.

Video: Flying over Becquerel

Dec 19, 2014

This latest release from the camera on ESA's Mars Express is a simulated flight over the Becquerel crater, showing large-scale deposits of sedimentary material.

Spinning up a dust devil on Mars

Dec 19, 2014

Spinning up a dust devil in the thin air of Mars requires a stronger updraft than is needed to create a similar vortex on Earth, according to research at The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH).

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.