The Washington Times - September 6, 2012, 01:09PM

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The final night of the Democratic National Convention will get off to an emotional start as organizers announced Thursday that former Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords will lead delegates in the Pledge of Allegiance.

Mrs. Giffords was severely wounded in an assassination attempt in 2011 at a Tucson shopping center. Six people, including a federal judge and one of the congresswoman’s staffers, were killed and 12 other people were injured.


The shooting sparked a national debate on gun violence and political civility, and President Obama attended a Tucson service held in the aftermath of the incident.

Mrs. Giffords, who was shot in the head and suffered extensive motor function damage, resigned her seat earlier this year to focus on her recovery. She returned to the campaign trail this summer to back former aide Ron Barber in his successful run to fill her vacant seat in a special election.

The news that Mrs. Giffords would lead the Pledge was first reported by the Capitol Hill publication Roll Call.