AP Exclusive: Book gives look at Giffords recovery

By Michelle Price

Associated Press

Published: Friday, Nov. 4 2011 9:50 p.m. MDT

When Kelly first saw Giffords after the shooting, she was in a coma, with her head partially shaved and bandaged, her face black and blue, and her body connected to tubes. He told her he loved her and assured her she would survive.

He said the darkest moment came later in Texas: Giffords realized she couldn't talk and panicked. Her eyes widened with fear, and she cried uncontrollably.

The book also offers lighter moments, like when former President Bush and his wife, Barbara, visited the Texas hospital, and when Giffords recognized the picture of Schwarzenegger and made an apparent reference to the former California governor's marital troubles.

Many people with brain injuries struggle to find the right words and repeat the same words and phrases. She eventually learned to talk again. Kelly said she was good at completing passages from the Constitution and Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech.

The book was co-written by Jeffrey Zaslow, who collaborated on Randy Pausch's million-selling "The Last Lecture."

Associated Press Writer Kevin Freking in Washington contributed to this report.

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