Derry schoolmates remember a friend

From staff reports

The Hampton Union, August 3, 1990

[The following article is courtesy of the Hampton Union and Seacoast Online.]

Those who knew Pamela Smart during her days as a high-school student at Pinkerton Academy recall a lively, bright and outgoing girl who they could not imagine charged with planning to kill her husband.

Smart was arrested Wednesday afternoon and arraigned in Derry District Court on charges of being an accomplice to first-degree murder. She is accused by law enforcement officials of helping three Seabrook youths plan out the murder of her husband, Gregory Smart, whose maiden name was Pamela Wojas, was a cheerleader, honor roll student, and Spanish tutor during her high school years.

Teresa Kay Schnell, a friend who has kept in touch with Smart, was in the Derry District courtroom during the arraignment Wednesday. They worked on Pinkerton's Winter Carnival together. "I'm one of her closest friends," Schnell said. She thinks police are wrong. "She's innocent," Schnell said. "She's a great person. She's never hurt anyone.

Bradford Ek, principal of Pinkerton Academy, called her an "above-average student."

She attended Pinkerton's college-bound program and was a class officer. Ek described the faculty reaction at Pinkerton Academy: "They're reacting like everybody else. I think they're just surprised."

He called the situation regretful. "Pam was in my daughter's class and it's unfortunate that something like this had to happen. It's just a whole bizarre situation that I wish never had to occur."

A fan of the rock group, Van Halen, Smart appeared as "Pam Halen" in the school's variety show and drove around in a Honda CRX with the license plate "Halen."

Schnell described Smart as a selfless person. "She thinks a lot of other people, more than she thinks about herself." Schnell said.