Mark Kelly, the astronaut husband of Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, has announced his retirement, effective October 1, from both NASA and the Navy. Giffords, who was shot in the head in January in a Tucson supermarket parking lot, was recently released from TIRR Memorial Hermann Hospital in Houston, and will soon begin outpatient therapy there. Kelly and Giffords will also be working on a book together, described as “an intimate chronicle of everything from their careers and courtship to the Jan. 8 tragedy,” which will be published by Scribner.
“As life takes unexpected turns we frequently come to a crossroads. I am at this point today,” Kelly said in a statement posted Tuesday on his Facebook page. “Gabrielle is working hard every day on her mission of recovery. I want to be by her side.”
The couple will collaborate with Jeffrey Zaslow, who worked with “Sully” Sullenberger and Randy Pausch on their books, on the memoir.
The AP reports that Giffords will get no advance and that the book deal must be cleared by the House ethics committee because of rules covering members of the House. A portion of the book’s proceeds will go to Arizona charities.