Giffords heads to D.C. for husband's retirement

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords is scheduled to attend her husband's retirement ceremony in Washington.

The Arizona congresswoman, who was shot in January outside a Tucson grocery store, is set to join her husband, Navy Capt. Mark Kelly, at an event Thursday that will be presided over by Vice President Joe Biden.

Giffords' press secretary, Mark Kimble, tells The Associated Press that Giffords will then return to Houston, where she is undergoing rehabilitation therapy.

Giffords stunned colleagues in August when she briefly returned to the Capitol to vote for a bill raising the government's debt ceiling.

Kelly was the commander of the last mission of space shuttle Endeavour in May. He is writing a memoir with his wife that is set to be released Nov. 15.

On "The Early Show" Thursday, Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee and a close friend of Giffords', said that she continues to make "wonderful progress."

"With each passing month, (Gabby) is working so hard, and, you know, in rehabilitation and physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy. She's just really progressing along the way all of the doctors would like her to and even beyond that. And we're so proud of her and I am excited to see her this afternoon," Wasserman-Schultz, D-Fla., said.

When the two speak on the phone, Wasserman-Schultz says Giffords is able to initiate some conversation and "respond extensively."

"You can have conversations with her," Schultz said.

Looking forward, "Early Show" co-anchor Erica Hill said, "A lot of people wondering, any talk at this point of when they may return to Washington for her job as a congresswoman there?"

Wasserman-Schultz replied, "We are still 10 months from the shooting in January and she's got a long way to go. She is working very hard. They are not focused on that at this point. At this point, they're still focused on her making a full recovery."