Two young brothers from Bow were killed and their father was seriously injured in a crash on Interstate 89 in that town on Friday morning.
Killed in the crash were Nicholas Ouellette, an 11th-grader who was on the Bow High School football team, and Gavin Ouellette, who was in first grade, according to information posted on the Bow School District website.
The boys’ father, Thomas Ouellette, 44, was driving his Ford Expedition southbound when his vehicle drifted from the right-hand travel lane into the breakdown lane and struck the rear of a disabled tractor-trailer truck that was parked in that lane, according to a news release from state police.
Ouellette, who is a police officer in Bow, was taken to Concord Hospital with serious but not life-threatening injuries, police said in a news release.
Bow School Superintendent Dean Cascadden called Thomas Ouellette “a great guy" and said he was excited about his new assignment as the district's school resource officer.
“The Ouellette family is well known in Bow, very involved in the community, so this is going to be a town-wide, community-wide event to process,” he said.
The Ouellette family has two other children, Nicholas' twin sister and a fifth-grade boy, he said.
All co-curricular school activities in Bow were canceled for the day. “We will be sending all of our students home after school to be with their parents and guardians,” Cascadden said in the posted statement.
Nicholas Ouellette was a linebacker on Bow High School’s football team. Friday night's home game against Hillsboro-Deering/Hopkinton was canceled because of the tragedy.
Instead, students and community members gathered on the football field Friday evening to share their grief and console one another. The Falcons' scoreboard clock was set to 55:55 to honor Nicholas, who wore number 55.
Students wrote messages of love and support to the Ouellette family.
Thomas Ouellette, who joined the Bow Police Department in April, previously served as a police officer in Manchester and Weare.
On social media, Weare Police Chief Christopher Moore wrote that Ouellette had left his department earlier this year so that he could work in Bow and spend more time with his family. “Our heartfelt thoughts and prayers go out to the Ouellette family and the Bow community during this difficult time,” Moore wrote.
The crash happened shortly after 8:30 a.m., just south of Exit 2 in Bow, according to state police.
The southbound side of I-89 was closed for five hours after the crash.
State police are asking anyone with information about the crash to contact Trooper First Class Nathaniel Goodwin at 846-3333 or by email at: Nathaniel.D.Goodwin@dos.nh.gov.