PEMBROKE PINES, Fla. -

A 17-year-old girl injured in a drive-by shooting prepared to head to Washington, D.C. with U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz for President Obama's State of the Union address.

On April 17, 2012, Megan Hobson was injured in a drive-by shooting when her sister's car was riddled with bullets.

"I laid across the back seat. With me laying across the back seat, I had been hit with an AK-47 rifle," she said. "The bullet penetrated through my hip. It went through the bumper, the trunk, and the back seat."

Hobson is accompanying Wasserman Schultz to the president's address Tuesday. She hopes her appearance helps put a stop to gun violence.

"Something can be done and something needs to be done," Hobson said. "This has affected me. This has affected my family and my friends, so I know it is affecting a lot of other peoples' family and friends that this happens to."

"It's absolutely essential that we put a face on gun violence beyond tragedies like Newtown and Aurora and Tucson because this is a common, every day occurrence," said Wasserman Schultz.

Hobson now counsels youths recovering Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital, where she was treated.

"Now I realize that everything happens for a reason and if that didn't happen to me nine months ago, I wouldn't be here today," said Hobson.

Meantime, a determined South Florida centenarian who had to make two trips and wait several hours to vote for President Barack Obama last fall was invited to sit with first lady Michelle Obama during Tuesday's State of the Union. Her resolve became a symbol of early voting obstacles in the presidential election.