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Obamas to travel to Tucson Wednesday in wake of weekend rampage

From Ed Henry, CNN Senior White House Correspondent
President Obama: "All of us are still grieving and in shock from the tragedy that took place."
President Obama: "All of us are still grieving and in shock from the tragedy that took place."
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The president will attend a memorial service and visit with victims' families
  • He has spoken to many of the family members already by phone
  • Obama led the country in a moment of silence on Monday

Washington (CNN) -- President Obama will travel to Arizona on Wednesday in the wake of the weekend shooting there that left six people dead and 14 wounded, including a member of Congress.

The president and his wife, Michelle Obama, will attend a memorial service and visit with victims' families at the University of Arizona in Tucson, according to a statement from the school.

The president is expected to speak at the memorial service at 6 p.m. local time. The service is open to the campus and the Tucson community.

Obama began working on his speech Monday night. He will devote most of his remarks to memorializing the victims, a White House official said. A 9-year-old girl, a federal judge and four others died in the shooting. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords remains in critical condition after being shot in the head.

Obama has already spoken to many of the victims' family members by phone.

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"The president thought it was important to visit the Tucson community since this tragedy touched everyone there as well as throughout the entire country in some way," White House spokesman Nick Shapiro said.

"The president believes that right now, the main thing we should be doing is offering our thoughts and prayers to those who've been impacted and making sure that we're joining together and pulling together as a country," he added.

Obama on Monday led the nation in a moment of silence as flags across the country flew at half-staff to honor the victims.

"All of us are still grieving and in shock from the tragedy that took place," Obama said at the White House. "Right now, the main thing we're doing is to offer our thoughts and prayers to those who've been impacted -- making sure that we're joining together and pulling together as a country."

Jared Lee Loughner, 22, faces five federal counts in connection to the rampage outside an Arizona supermarket. He made his first court appearance Monday in Phoenix.

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