Friend: Giffords' personality 'starting to shine through'
March 11th, 2011
06:07 PM ET

Friend: Giffords' personality 'starting to shine through'

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ personality “is really starting to shine through,” says Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who visited her friend and colleague at a Houston rehabilitation hospital last week.

“There’s been so much progress made in the month since I’ve seen her,” Wasserman Schultz said. “She’s so much more interactive and responsive.”

Doctors at The Institute for Rehabilitation and Research in Houston said Friday  at a news conference that Giffords has been speaking in full sentences and is able to walk with assistance.

Wasserman Schultz said she and former congressional colleague Melissa Bean did most of the talking when they visited with Giffords on Saturday.

“[Giffords] understands everything you’re saying, and mostly she answers ‘yes,’” she said. “She was able to respond with a few phrases intermittently among the more simple responses…they’re not two-way conversations like we usually have.”

She added that Giffords seemed much more like herself compared with a month ago.

“The Gabby we know is coming back more and more every day,” she said. “You can really see the little Gabby idiosyncrasies.”

She said Giffords was in a good mood, and seemed “pretty focused.”

“I think like any patient recovering, she has some normal frustrations with her progress,” Wasserman Schulz added. “But I saw much less frustration now than a month ago, which is awesome.”

This was Wasserman Schultz’s fourth trip to visit her friend since she was shot January 8. Earlier, she shared with CNN the best ways to help a sick friend from afar.

soundoff (58 Responses)
  1. Doug

    Good for you Gabby.. You are a shining example of what true love can do.. You are fortunate to have parents that stand by you as well as a very loving husband.. I hope you return to Congress and give em hell girl ...

    March 11, 2011 at 22:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. John in Los Angeles

    Although it started as unbelievable tragedy, your predicament (and how you've battled it) has inspired millions to see beyond all the hate, ugliness, and misfortune in the world and be reminded of why this thing called life is worth sticking around for.

    March 12, 2011 at 00:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. EdieRose

    God Bless you Gabby...we are all praying for you and for your full recovery. Keep up the good work!

    March 12, 2011 at 00:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Sgt. Joe.

    Your comment is twisted, not to mention way off base. Let me guess which party you belong to.

    March 12, 2011 at 01:07 | Report abuse | Reply
    • IaCheNeHe

      one different than yours eh?

      March 12, 2011 at 16:24 | Report abuse |
  5. Aaron

    Shocking that he/she didn't recommend that Palin put the crosshairs back on Rep. Giffords. Fortunately, she seems to be doing well...gotta be a big disappoint to Dark and its ilk.

    March 12, 2011 at 01:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • chris

      give it a rest. liberal hypocrisy knows no bounds.

      March 14, 2011 at 10:38 | Report abuse |
  6. brian

    how can we believe what we hear and not see. so much publicity but noone has shown proof of her progress. if it were anybody else we might have proof from videos and pictures. what are they hiding????????????? our prayers are with her and her family regardless.

    March 12, 2011 at 03:11 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Andrew

      We hear all about God, but never see Him...how about some faith???

      March 12, 2011 at 03:52 | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      We don't see her most likely because half of her head is missing. They removed a portion of her skull, which leaves a shockingly sunken in head. Also, she is wearing a helmet for protection. It is most likely going to happen that, once she is recovered enough and the surgeries have been done to repair the skull, pictures will be shown on television of her recovery efforts. The same thing happened with Bob Woodruff.

      March 12, 2011 at 07:08 | Report abuse |
    • Lou50

      I think you can read between the lines with what these two women said in the above article and make the easy decision that it is past time to get a special election going to replace her. the US government then can get back to work with full Arizona representation and she can mend as well as she possibly can at a reasonable pace without pressure. People need to worry about her now the damage is done and you can never unring that bell.

      March 12, 2011 at 07:28 | Report abuse |
    • Tim

      It is called privacy, dolt. She was shot in the face. Did you want to see that? Are you a ghoul?

      March 12, 2011 at 08:45 | Report abuse |
    • Kathy, Tucson AZ

      Her doctors have said many times that they are currently not releasing photos because a portion of her skull has been removed, which has left one side of her face caved in. Once the skull is replaced she will will look herself again, and we'll see photos and video. As others have stated, it's a matter of privacy.

      March 12, 2011 at 10:36 | Report abuse |
    • clarke

      Why would anyone want to infringe on her right to privacy and show videos. Really is disgraceful and full of disrespect on your part.

      March 12, 2011 at 11:08 | Report abuse |
    • Emily

      It's none of your, or our, business! What kind of "proof" do you need?! This isn't some vast conspiracy–the woman was shot in the head. I sure as hell wouldn't want my face splashed across the Internet after a traumatic injury, and she has the same right to privacy as any other American citizen. A state representative undoubtedly loses some of her privacy as an elected official, but how on Earth could you question her right to MEDICAL privacy?

      March 12, 2011 at 11:43 | Report abuse |
    • cmh

      If I had half my skull missing I don't think I want pictures of myself released. If you believe she is not getting better – go ahead, no one is stopping you from thinking that. It sounds like she is making great progress whether you have in any belief in that or not.

      March 12, 2011 at 13:25 | Report abuse |
    • iminim

      She has been shot in the head and under intensive medical treatment for weeks, thus no pictures for privacy reasons. Surely that is understandable ......"brian"......and why are YOU hiding behind the anonymity of a single name and no photo? What are you hiding? Hmmm........I think I see a coverup here......

      March 12, 2011 at 16:25 | Report abuse |
    • Jer

      Brian, how about respecting the family's right to privacy?

      March 14, 2011 at 14:51 | Report abuse |
  7. wyciwyg

    YEAAA! so glad to hear good news... and to Aaron's comment : U R a bottom feeder! a sicko who spews hatred and lies with NO FACTUAL basis. hope a rock rolls over on ya

    March 12, 2011 at 03:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Andrew

    You can really tell who is a Democrat and who is a republican just by the posts alone. Republicans never miss a chance to kick others when they are down. We need crosshairs on that stupid GOP!

    March 12, 2011 at 03:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Michael

    What a troll!

    March 12, 2011 at 04:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • IaCheNeHe

      Troll watcher eh?

      March 12, 2011 at 16:26 | Report abuse |
  10. Gabor47

    Yes, I am glad that she is getting better.

    No, she will never be back to totally normal.

    Signed:The voice of reality

    March 12, 2011 at 08:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Quill

      Tell that to Bob Woodruff!

      March 12, 2011 at 11:42 | Report abuse |
    • cmh

      Right on Quill!

      March 12, 2011 at 13:27 | Report abuse |
    • Hope

      Gabor47, I am speechless, trying to figure out what point you are trying to make with your cynical comment. I hope she recovers to such an extent that the differences are pretty easy for her to live with. There is no reason to be cynical in this early stage of recovery.

      March 13, 2011 at 04:52 | Report abuse |
    • jackson

      I agree, she wont be the same, whether all your prayers and the Gods mighty hand saves her or not

      March 14, 2011 at 11:44 | Report abuse |
  11. Tom

    She's too good for the unholy world of politics. She'll find something more noble to do with her life. By the way, I don't support either Democrats or Republicans. Both parties are full of mindless subjects trying to force their ideas down each others throats. God Bless you Gabrielle!

    March 12, 2011 at 09:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. clarke

    After such an injury to the brain, it is like having to be reborn. She is a very strong women and all my best wishes of recovery to her and her family. God speed!

    March 12, 2011 at 11:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. clarke

    You are just not a very nice person are you.

    March 12, 2011 at 11:03 | Report abuse | Reply
    • IaCheNeHe

      And what does that make you Clarke?

      March 12, 2011 at 16:26 | Report abuse |
  14. Ms. G

    Wow, Good News!!! As illusive as it was, (Due to understandable personal privacy).
    Ms. Gifford's progress is the best news I've heard all week. It's a bright light, shining through a horrific tragedy, that affects all of us, in one way or another. (I've been there). My prayers go out to Gabby, Mark, their family and friends. To all the other victims, family and friends.. Go Gabby Go!!!!!!

    March 12, 2011 at 11:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. who cares

    who cares. theres more important issues at hand. tired of hearing about her. im sure CNN will keep everyone posted on a weekly basis of her health. just shows CNN can't find anything worth reporting. desperate times in the field huh?

    March 12, 2011 at 13:00 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jon

      Yeah, it's been a slow few weeks in the news hasn't it? Wait no, you're the only slow one here.

      March 13, 2011 at 03:51 | Report abuse |
    • JFT

      And you can't find anything else to do than to click on stories you don't care about?

      March 13, 2011 at 21:22 | Report abuse |
  16. Sees All Evil

    @Brian are you that much of an insensative idiot to ask for pictures of a lovely woman who was horribly injured and is recovering! are you a azz licker of palins? why do you need pictures? Would you let the news show pictures of you to satisfy the morbid curiosity of some inbred moron who needs photographic proof of thier recovery. think before you post azzclown!

    March 12, 2011 at 13:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Sees All Evil

    Hey WHO CARES your a fkn idiot if you dont want to read updates about Gabby dont read them, but DO refrain from wasting space with your obvious rethug/peeparty slant. Nobody is forcing you to read it so Fk-Off and go read some gop propaganda thats more your speed inbred shthead!

    March 12, 2011 at 15:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Sees All Evil

    There now that i took my meds to calm down. i would like to say my thoughts and prayers for Gabby continue. God Bless You Gabby and bring you to a complete recovery. I got a bit out of control apologies to fellow bloggers if i was offensive to those here who are TRULY concerned about our Rep. Giffords. I have personal experience with head injury as i suffered a compound fractured skull at age 4 and had a portion of my skull removed until age 10 when i got a plate put in. i didnt want pictures then and to this day even though the drs. did an incredable job to this day at 52 i still dont look right to myself and shy away when cameras are out. anyway this isnt about me.

    March 12, 2011 at 15:49 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Hope

      I appreciate you sharing your story and wishing her well.

      March 13, 2011 at 04:54 | Report abuse |
  19. IaCheNeHe

    The Christians are worried now.

    March 12, 2011 at 16:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Mr. Davidson

    Finally got the media circus out of there and the President and politicians milking her tragedy for all it was worth,now to look back ,how extremely gross. Now theres a chance for recovery in private she doesn't have to be paraded around in another media fiasco to heal.

    March 12, 2011 at 22:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. OldGoat

    While I don't agree with Rep. Giffords' politics—I'm a conservative sort of goat—I am glad to hear she is making progress. It's going to be a long, tough road for her to negotiate, and full normality may never return. However, she is alive, getting excellent care and has a better than average chance of making a good recovery.

    As far as comments about how someone should be elected in her place, isn't that assertion a bit premature?

    March 12, 2011 at 22:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. keith

    With all the negative, depressing and discouraging things happening in the world, we need to remember that amazing, yes miraculous, things do happen, and terrible things that happen to people can sometmes not only be survived but inspire a flowering of love, understanding, and faith. It is quite amazing that Gabrille is alive and coherent. This is just the beginning of this story. Whether or not she is competent to return to her job is irrelvant.

    March 13, 2011 at 04:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. shelovesthem

    i am so flabergasted at the way we act when we see a chance to blog..it could be about martha stewarts prison recipes... People are so funny they wake up ..put on a cup a joe and look for the ..post a comment feature and they are off..i am just concerned at the world today..we have made entertainment out of misery and downfall...yes charlie i am talking about your winning butt. God bless america! And people if you need to get some mental help for god sakes do it,

    March 13, 2011 at 09:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. SidMathe

    Gabby may may never be normal, she may drool a bit and walk funny, but at least she's alive, thank the lord for that.

    March 13, 2011 at 12:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Vera

    An iPhone app that can save your life? That's right! The Breast Health GPS can locate the nearest mammogram screening center AND connect you to all the social networking sites of the Breast Health and Healing Foundation. It's the # 1 breast cancer app on iTunes! Take a look: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/breast-health-gps/id361840350?mt=8

    March 14, 2011 at 00:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Darlene Yepko

    God Bless you Gabbey,go get em TIGER!Ill be watching the last launch that falls on my birthday April 19th.LVNV :-)D

    March 14, 2011 at 01:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. Ness

    UNbelievable!!! Whether you believe the story or not...you have no right to plant that kind of conspiracy in the eads of others....if that is your belief, then so be it...but for now ...keep it to yourself...Gabby as already suffered enough and still has a long road ahead of her!! The disrespect and lack of human kindess is not acceptable! Leave it alone! GOD BLESS you Gabby...my thoughts and prayers are with you!

    March 14, 2011 at 11:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. steve

    The constant puffing up of Giffords recovery is ridiculous and yet so calculated. Reminds me ofthe baby Jesus phenomenon the Libs created with our beloved "voted and ruling present" President. Cut the crap and let this human recover with normal expectations and of course we all wish her the best but this is no miracle people, its just another hurt person recovering nicely.

    March 14, 2011 at 12:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. steve

    Unreal, I made a decent post and some democrap deleted it haha Go Giffords! Run for Pres Now you have half a brain which is 50% more than your fearless leader has

    March 14, 2011 at 12:45 | Report abuse | Reply
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    I amy a bit late to this post, but Gabby showed class during her ordeal. I hope in a few years she will be back on the public scene.

    March 5, 2012 at 09:04 | Report abuse | Reply
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