America's first lady Michelle Obama embraces astronaut Mark E Kelly, the husband of Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.
The politician was one of 13 people wounded on Saturday when a gunman went on the rampage in Arizona.
Another six - including a nine-year-old girl - were killed.
On Wednesday she opened her eyes for the first time following brain surgery.
At a memorial for the victims, President Barack Obama interrupted his prepared text to announce the news.
"Gabby opened her eyes. So I can tell you she knows we are here. She knows we love her.
"And she knows that we are rooting for her through what is undoubtedly going to be a difficult journey," he said.