Family of Greg Smart must deal with the weight of tragedy

By Patrick Crowley

Posted: 4/20/06

© Copyright 2007, Keene Equinox

The one person who would know the true tragedy of the Pam Smart murder trial can't say anything.

He won't be able to tell us about his reaction the night he came home from work and was shot in the head. He can't talk about his innocence in relation to the severity of the crime committed on him, and never will we hear from Greg Smart that this whole thing started when a young marriage began to fall apart.

Pam Smart, found guilty of planning her husband's death in 1991, now serves her life sentence without the possibility of parole at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility in Bedford, N.Y.

With her sentence comes her family's ongoing battle to get her out of prison through appeals and a recent petition for pardon, heard by Governor John Lynch and the Executive Council last summer.

The petition was denied.

"I do not understand how someone can be allowed to state their own plea for a pardon when, in fact, a life sentence for what they did was a justifiable punishment," wrote William Smart, the father of the victim, in a written statement to Governor Lynch on January 15, 2005.

The statement was a part of the investigation regarding the pardon petition received by the governor.

It is likely the buzz around the case will live on for a long time, as can be seen in books, television specials and movies. But it is easy to lose sight in all the details that a young man, 24 years old, was killed as he came home from work. No appeals, petitions or pardons can change that.

William Smart will have to live with that hard fact. While attempts made by the Equinox to reach him for comment failed, his step-daughter, Kelley Reardon did respond through email, saying "please consider his feeling, for this has been a battle for the last 15 years and there are very few days when he isn't asked about it."

William Smart's emotional letter to the Governor from January, 2005 showed his pain and view of a very confusing crime.

"They say the hardest thing for a parent to do is bury a child. I will vouch for that and especially caused by a murderous conspiracy as senseless as what happened," wrote William Smart.

© Copyright 2007 Keene Equinox