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Navy Announces USS Gabrielle Giffords

ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- The Navy’s newest ship will be the USS Gabrielle Giffords.

Navy Secretary Ray Mabus made the announcement Friday at a Pentagon ceremony, calling Giffords someone whose name is synonymous with courage.

Former Rep. Gabby Giffords looked on at the Pentagon as Mabus made the announcement in a public ceremony. Also in attendance at the brief ceremony in the Pentagon Courtyard was Roxana Green, the mother of 9-year-old Christina-Taylor Green. Green was among those killed in last year’s deadly shooting rampage in Tucson that targeted Giffords as she met constituents outside a supermarket. Roxana Green will be the ship’s sponsor.

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Giffords is still recovering from the gunshot wounds to her head that she suffered during last January’s shooting incident. Just two weeks ago she stepped down from Congress.

The ship named Friday for her will be the Navy’s 10th Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), a new type of ship designed to bring the Navy fighting power into shallow coastal areas. The first two ships in this class were called Freedom and Independence, but since then the conventional practice has been to name the other ships in the class after a city.

Giffords also visited the White House earlier in the day to watch President Obama sign the last piece of legislation she sponsored as a member of Congress. The Ultralight Aircraft Smuggling Prevention Act of 2012 was passed late last month and gives law enforcement broader authority to counter illicit drug trafficking on U.S. borders.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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