A MOTHER still feels numb and in disbelief.
An aunt who was more like a sister — she was just six months older — carries a guilt that she could have prevented her death.
Grief spilled over repeatedly as a court yesterday heard the harrowing events that led to the loss of a girl who was always trying to make others smile.
When Kyralee Clark, 17, died in that crash on December 4, 2011, her aunt, Jessica Kidd, was sitting in the front seat diagonally opposite.
Both were wearing seatbelts and yet Miss Kidd survived with just minor injuries.
Yesterday it was clear to all in the packed Wodonga County Court room that Miss Kidd’s suffering, and that of many who knew Kyralee, was nowhere coming to an end.
“Ever since my niece’s death I have felt depressed and alone,” Miss Kidd said in her victim impact statement, read to the court by prosecutor Andy Moore.
“Sometimes I blame myself because I had called her that night to come from her friend’s birthday to come see me, which led to her begging for her life — scared and crying, not knowing what was going to happen.”
Miss Kidd doesn’t understand why Nilsson Smyth chose to lead police on a high-speed chase — so dangerous at one point that they called it off — with two young teenage girls in the car.
“Being in that situation was the most scariest thing I have ever experienced,” Miss Kidd said.
“From that I feel extremely uncomfortable with people driving fast at all.”
Miss Kidd said “we just want justice to be served — she deserved so much more”.
Five victim impact statements were provided to the court, though requests were made that three not be read out.
For Kyralee’s mother, Jodie Brunton, the grief becomes raw through the simple realisation she will never hear her daughter’s voice again.
“I am never going to see her achieve the things she wanted to in her life and never going to love any grandchildren from her,” she said.
Ms Brunton feels for her two older children who “are still trying to cope” without their big sister, and for the two little sisters who would never get to meet her.
“I’m angry at the selfishness of the driver who has had no remorse in what he has done and more at the stupid choice he made that night, which has now changed my life forever,” Ms Brunton said.
Kyralee had not long finished year 10 at Murray High School.
“I always dream about Kyra, sometimes I wake up crying because reality has hit — she’s gone,” Miss Kidd said.