Navy ship to be named for Gabrielle Giffords (VIDEO)

The US Navy honored the strength and fighting spirit of Gabrielle Giffords by naming a battle ship after her on Friday, USA Today reported.

The former Arizona congresswoman is being honored after surviving a gunshot to the head last year. The Navy will name its newest Littoral Combat Ship, a small surface vessel, the USS Gabrielle Giffords, the Washington Post reported.

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Rosanna Green, the mother of Christina-Taylor Green, the 9-year-old killed in the Tucson shooting, will be the ship’s “sponsor.” The Navy has not said when the ship will be ready, but it will be the 17th vessel named after a woman, and the 13th after a living person, USA Today reported.

“I am pleased to honor Gabrielle Giffords and the people of Arizona with the naming of this ship,” said Ray Mabus, secretary of the Navy, the Houston Chronicle reported. “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 victoriously despite great challenges.”

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Giffords and her husband Mark Kelly attended the ceremony at the Pentagon, but neither of them spoke.

Giffords was already in Washington to attend a ceremony at the White House in which President Barack Obama signed her final measure into law, which stiffens penalties for drug smugglers who use ultra-light aircraft to ferry drugs across the southern border with Mexico and northern border with Canada, the Associated Press reported.

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"She has spent her career fighting for the safety of the people of Arizona and the fact that it passed unanimously shows just how much Gabby is respected by her colleagues in Congress in both parties," Obama said, USA Today reported. "I'm confident that while this legislation may have been her last act as a congresswoman, it will not be her last act of public service."

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