Nancy Ezhaya was “a true teacher” who devoted her life to her vocation, Bonny Eagle school district officials said Wednesday, two days after Ezhaya died in a wrong-way crash on the interstate.

She taught English at Bonny Eagle from 1973 until her retirement in 2011, MSAD 6 Superintendent Clay Gleason said in a statement. “She was highly regarded by colleagues and was very passionate about her job. Nancy cared deeply for her students and colleagues and was a true friend.”

The 72-year-old died Monday after, investigators believe, she went the wrong way onto the northbound off-ramp at Bucknam Road in Falmouth and headed south on the interstate, Maine State Police spokesperson Shannon Moss said Tuesday. She collided head-on with another vehicle, killing the other driver, Allen Apblett, and seriously injuring his wife, Natalie Menzies.

The crash shut down traffic for three hours on Monday, one of the year’s busiest travel days.

Ezhaya, a veteran teacher of more than 35 years in MSAD 6, was always willing to share her expertise with new teachers, Gleason said. MSAD 6 serves the towns of Buxton, Hollis, Limington, Standish and Frye Island.

“Her infectious laugh and quick wit were her hallmarks, in and out of the classroom,” he said.


Ezhaya could tell the same story multiple times but she always made you laugh like it was the first time she told it, Gleason said.

She taught many levels throughout her career, but loved helping ease freshmen into high school, he said.

A champion of students and a leader of teachers, Ezhaya was integral in bringing the concept of teaming, a process where groups of teachers work to build connections and foster relationships with students, to Bonny Eagle High School, Gleason said.

“She never lost a pencil because she had her name written on all of them,” he said.

Apblett was also a longtime educator who taught chemistry at Oklahoma State University for over 25 years, the university confirmed Tuesday.

Investigators initially believed Ezhaya was suffering from a medical condition that caused her to become confused and take the wrong ramp onto the interstate. But state police clarified on Tuesday that investigators have not confirmed whether medical issues were involved.

The overpass on Bucknam Road at Exit 10 is under construction but no workers were on the scene because of the Memorial Day holiday.

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