Sen. Mark Kelly and Former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords Welcome First Grandchild: So 'Proud'
Senator Mark Kelly and former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords are grandparents!
On Saturday, the two welcomed their first grandchild, Sage, who was born at 1:48 p.m. local time in Tucson, Arizona, to Kelly's daughter Claudia and her fiancé Mark Sundman.
"Gabby and I couldn't be happier to be welcoming our first grandchild to the family," Sen. Kelly said in a statement sent to PEOPLE. "The most important roles I have ever had in my life have been husband and father. Today, I get to be a proud parent of my daughter Claudia, who is going to be a wonderful mother, and her sister Claire, who is excited to be an aunt, and Gabby and I also get to be proud grandparents, ready to spoil and love the newest member of our family."
The baby and Claudia are both healthy, according to the senator's office.
Sen. Kelly shared a photo of the proud grandparents holding the newborn on Twitter, writing in a caption, "In a year of firsts, this has to be my favorite: Everyone please join me in welcoming our first grandchild, Baby Sage."
In November, Sen. Kelly made history by flipping an Arizona Senate seat held by Republican Martha McSally. The Democrat also joined a small club with his victory, becoming the fourth NASA astronaut elected to Congress.
A retired U.S. Navy captain and astronaut, Sen. Kelly has flown in four space missions, including the final mission of Space Shuttle Endeavour in 2011.
His wife, former Arizona Congresswoman Giffords, 50, was shot and nearly killed in 2011.
Giffords invoked her own story in March after 10 people were killed in a Boulder, Colorado, grocery store.
"Today it's a tragedy in Boulder, Colorado. This past weekend it was a house party in Philadelphia. And last week it was an armed attack on Asian American women in the Atlanta area," Giffords wrote. "It doesn't have to be this way. It's beyond time for our leaders to take action."
"This is an especially personal tragedy for me," the former Arizona representative added. "I survived a shooting at a grocery store that devastated my beloved Tucson. It's been 10 years and countless communities have faced something similar. This is not normal."
The gunman who shot Giffords also killed six others, including a federal judge named John Roll and a 9-year-old named Christina-Taylor Green. In total, 13 people were injured in the Tucson mass shooting.
In pre-recorded remarks that aired during the 2020 Democratic National Convention, Giffords said America was at a "crossroads" when it comes to gun violence.
"We are at a crossroads," she said. "We can let the shooting continue or we can act. We can protect our families and our future."