Pam Simon was in a federal courtroom in Tucson Tuesday for Jared Lee Loughner's competency and plea hearing. In the 19 months since she and 18 others were shot by Loughner in Tucson, Simon has missed only one court proceeding in the case.
Tuesday's brought closure, she says, although she had difficulty listening to the judge and Loughner discussing what happened, including Loughner's description of shooting to kill her and others.
“It is a strange experience, certainly not something I could have ever imagined," the ever-smiling Simon says. "But it was truly a day where I reflected on those we lost.”
Simon, who was outreach director for Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, on Jan. 8, 2011, was referring to six people who died that day, including her colleague in the congressional office, Gabe Zimmerman.
Simon says with the possibility of a trial “hanging out there," it has always been unfinished business. She also says in the months following the shooting she has become very close to some other victims.
Simon is also becoming active in violence control measures. She appears in a new, national TV advertisement urging President Obama and presumptive Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney to address gun violence.