10-year memorial for grandma and granddaughter killed by drunken driver

Megan Michelotti

May 1 used to be an average day for Heather Robbins and her family until the banality of it was forever stolen away.

On this date 10 years ago around 10:30 p.m., 16-year-old Justine Smith and 51-year-old Mildred “Kay” Richard, both from Helena, were hit head-on by a drunken driver. Smith died at the scene, and Richard died later at St. Peter’s Health. 

They were on their way home.

Justine was Robbins’ daughter, and Kay was her mother.

The night of the accident, Robbins recalled getting a phone call that said her mother was in an accident with one of her friends, but she knew that her mother never drove her friends around.

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“When I finally got there, they finally realized that my daughter was with her, and my world just crumbled into pieces,” Robbins said.

She said the only reason she got through it was because of her “lifesavers,” her two friends of many years, Dawn and Amy Pellicane. She said Dawn’s daughter was best friends with Justine, and they did everything together.

Pellicane wrote that Kay was like a mom to her and many others and

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