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US 1st Lady to attend gun violence victim funeral

Xinhua | Updated: 2013-02-08 10:09

WASHINGTON - US First Lady Michelle Obama will attend the funeral service for a Chicago teen who was gunned down just days after performing inauguration festivities for President Barack Obama, ABC News reported on Thursday.

The White House confirmed Thursday that Michelle Obama will attend the funeral service for Hadiya Pendleton who was killed on Jan 29, blocks from her school on the south side of Chicago, also close to the Obamas' home.

The 15-year-old girl was a drum majorette in the King College Pre School band, who performed with her classmates at several inaugural events in the capitol last month.

White House senior adviser Valerie Jarrett and Education Secretary Arne Duncan, who are both from Chicago, will also attend Saturday's funeral service.

The first lady's decision to attend the funeral comes as the president is generating public support for his package of gun control agenda and push for Congress to move on the long-time divisive issue.

Days ahead of his second-term inauguration, Obama unveiled a sweeping package of gun violence reduction proposals, a month after the Sandy Hook Elementary School mass shooting. The December massacre that killed 26 people including 20 schoolchildren has renewed the nationwide debate on gun-control necessity.

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