Schools help woman hit by alleged drunk driver

A day that forever changed a Reno family’s life. December 27, 2018, a suspected drunk driver hit then-27-year-old Kelly Cass while she was riding a skateboard near her home in Citrus Heights, a Sacramento suburb.

Since then the medical bills have piled up and now McQueen High School, her alma mater, and Reno High School are teaming up to help out.

The 'Hoops for Hope' fundraiser was held at Reno High School Wednesday, March 13, 2019. Staff from both schools played a full basketball game. The proceeds of the event go directly to the Cass family. Kelly Cass sat courtside and says the community’s support is what keeps her going.

“Yeah, it’s been a tough last three months, but you know, it’s just been a lot of PT and therapy and staying super positive and knowing that I’m going to walk again really shortly,” says Kelly Cass.

Her optimistic and encouraging spirit filled the Reno High gym as hundreds watched her cheer on her former McQueen Lancers and her father’s former co-workers, in the Reno Huskies.

“The fact that she’s here kind of brings light to the whole situation and kind of makes people think about what really matters in life,” says Reno High School Athletic Director Jim Pace.

McQueen girls basketball assistant coach Janelle Conine says she’s proud of Cass.

“For everything that she’s been through, to be able to come out here and to show courage not only to our youth but just to people in general,” says Conine.

Although Cass was all smiles at the event, she says the recovery process has mentally tough.

“They did say I wasn’t going to be able to walk again originally and I didn’t believe them. So, I’m not going to believe it no matter what. I’m just going to keep remembering that, how strong internally I am and physically I can be, and I can accomplish anything if I put my mind to it,” says Cass.

Cass adds that events like these keep her belief strong.

“I just want to say thank you so much to everyone that came out. For just supporting me through all of this. This situation is super tough, but made easier by the love and support of others.”

The highlight of the night-- more than $5,000 dollars was raised in Cass’ honor.

The Lancers' staff beat the Huskies' staff 51-40. If you missed the event but want to make a donation, you can call Reno High School through March 15, 2019. Just say you want to make a donation to the Cass family.