Navy To Name New Ship After Giffords

Ship Named After Retired Rep. Gabrielle Giffords To Be Based In San Diego

One of the new littoral combat ships that will be based in San Diego will be named after retired Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was wounded in the Tucson shootings last year, the Navy announced Friday.

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"I am pleased to honor Gabrielle Giffords and the people of Arizona with the naming of this ship," Navy Secretary Ray Mabus said during a ceremony in a Pentagon courtyard. "Giffords and the ship's sponsor, Roxanna Green, are sources of great inspiration and represent the Navy and Marine Corps qualities of overcoming, adapting and coming out victorious despite great challenges."

Green is the mother of 9-year-old Christina-Taylor Green, one of six killed in the mass shooting at a meeting the Democratic lawmaker was holding for constituents last January.

The alleged gunman, Jared Loughner, is awaiting trial in a case overseen by San Diego-based U.S. District Court Judge Larry Burns.

Giffords, the wife of astronaut Mark Kelly, recently resigned from Congress to focus on her recovery.

Littoral combat ships are a new class of vessel designed for warfare in coastal waters, and the Navy plans to base all of them in San Diego. Delivery has been delayed by structural and mechanical problems.

The vessel will be the 16th named after a woman and 13th after a living person, according to the Navy. Mabus did not say when the ship would be built.

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