Mary Jo Nye, 60, of Battle Creek, Michigan was driving a Chevrolet Cruze in the Cracker Barrel parking lot when she was killed. The retired English teacher served as "a motherly figure" to students at an alternative high school for at-risk teens, coaching even the most reluctant ones to become better writers.
While Nye didn't have children of her own, she played an important role in the lives of students.
"She was an English teacher, but she was a lot more than that to the students who don't come from great home lives," said Tara Egnatuk, assistant director of the Calhoun Community High School where Nye worked. Nye helped launch the school by working on writing its charter.
Two passengers in Nye's vehicle, Barbara Hawthorne, 68, and Dorothy Brown, 74, were also killed. Another passenger, a 14-year-old is currently in critical condition.