LEVANT – Nancy L. Knowles, 55, passed away peacefully Oct. 25, 2012, at a Bangor hospital after a two-year battle with breast cancer. She was born June 3, 1957, in Camden, the daughter of Paul T. and Jessie Barton Leonard.
Nancy graduated from Nokomis Regional High School, class of 1975. She was a member of the National Honor Society, the band and loved singing, trips with chorus and was proud to represent the school. After graduation she went to the University of Maine at Farmington, class of 1979. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in special education and general education in grades kindergarten through 12, and was a member of Lambda Epsilon Society. She continued her education at the University of Maine in 1988, attaining a master’s degree in special education. In 2004 she gained a Degree of Education Administration, and in 2007, as well as 2009 a Certification of Advance Study. During her career for 33 years in special education, she focused on making a difference in each of her student’s lives. She loved her students and finding the one special thing for each that made their eyes light up, and know they retained what she taught them; it was always for the kids. She taught in Dover-Foxcroft at Foxcroft Academy, Palmyra Elementary, Carmel Elementary, Caravel Middle School, Susan S. Smith School, Levant, and Brewer Community School, while there she was a member of Community of Caring for five years. She loved teaching. Nancy was an active sister with the Delta Cappa Gama sorority for the past two years. She was a volunteer of National Ski Patrol for 22 years, where she taught many ski patrollers and ski instructors in outdoor emergency care. She was also the National Ski Patrol’s director of outdoor emergency care for the state of Maine for 15 years. Her joys in life were watching the birds and animals while sitting by her garden, and watching her two daughters and niece dance. She loved seeing her daughters, nephew, niece and grandchildren turn into wonderful young men and women.
Surviving in addition to her husband, David G. Knowles, are her daughters, Denise and Stephanie Knowles, all of Levant; stepdaughter, Caroldeen Ratliff and husband, Chad, of Mount Holly, N.C.; two grandchildren, Cade and Chloe Ratliff; parents, Paul T. and Jessie Barton Leonard of Newport; one brother, Christopher Leonard and wife, Tammy; nephew, Matthew Leonard; niece, Sara Leonard, all of Corinna; many aunts, uncles and cousins.
Relatives and friends are welcome to call 5-7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 1, at Brookings-Smith, 133 Center St., Bangor, where a celebration of her life will be held 4 p.m. Friday, Nov. 2, with Pastor Steve Smith, of Orono United Methodist Church, officiating. The family invites relatives and friends to share conversation and refreshments at the Family Reception Center at Brookings-Smith, 163 Center St., Bangor, after the service Friday. Those who wish to remember Nancy in a special way may make gifts in her memory to the Brewer High School Scholarship Fund in memory of Nancy Knowles, Brewer High School, 79 Parkway South, Brewer, ME 04412 or CancerCare of Maine, Lafayette Family Cancer Center, care of Healthcare Charities, P.O. Box 931, Bangor, ME 04402. Condolences to the family may be expressed at www.BrookingsSmith.com.