The man who was killed Saturday morning when a car careened off the highway and struck him while he was waiting to enter a Waterboro restaurant was well known and respected in the York County community, according to family members.

Mark Schepis Photo courtesy of the Schepis family

Mark Schepis, 45, and Luke Stephenson, 12, both of Waterboro, died when a vehicle operated by Charles Stoddard, 64, also of Waterboro, exited the roadway and struck them in the parking lot of the Cozi Corner Cafe – a restaurant and catering business at 199 Sokokis Trail – just after 9 a.m.

The victims’ families knew each other but were not related.

Sheriff William L. King said the investigation revealed that Stoddard was driving his 2003 Oldsmobile Alero north on Sokokis Trail when it veered off the road and entered the restaurant’s parking lot, where people were waiting their turn to enter the restaurant. Stoddard’s vehicle hit the marquee of the restaurant and continued on. Some patrons dodged the oncoming car and fled to safety.

“Two individuals were unable to avoid Stoddard’s vehicle and were struck and killed,” King said in a press release Saturday. Schepis and Stephenson were pronounced dead at the scene.

The victims knew each other and had been waiting outside with their families, according to King. Stoddard was transported to Southern Maine Health Care Center in Biddeford, where he was treated and released. The crash is being reconstructed by the the Saco and Old Orchard Beach police departments. Stoddard has not been charged.

When asked Sunday evening if Stoddard had been charged or if a medical event had contributed to the crash, King replied in an email, “I have nothing to report.”

Schepis’ cousin Jessica Charland of Scarborough and his daughter Elizabeth spoke about his life and accomplishments during a telephone interview Sunday night.

They said Schepis loved his line of work and commuted each day from his home in Waterboro to his job as director of support operations for Bottomline Technologies in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, where he had worked for more than 20 years. Bottomline provides payment, invoice and document automation solutions to institutions around the world.

Charland said that Schepis and his wife, Jessica, went to the restaurant on Saturday to meet friends for breakfast. Schepis was sitting on a curb with Stephenson when Stoddard’s car entered the parking lot, according to Charland.

Mark Schepis dancing with his wife, Jessica, in an undated photo Photo courtesy of the Schepis family

“Going to Cozi Corner was a regular thing for them,” Charland said of the couple, who celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary in May. “But it’s a small place and they were waiting for a table.”

Charland said the family is hopeful that the police investigation will provide more details about what caused Stoddard to leave the road. In the meantime, the family will grieve over the loss of a man who loved his family dearly.

“He was an amazing family man. His family meant everything to him,” she said.

His daughter Elizabeth, 22, said her father coached youth baseball teams and was an unofficial “cheer dad,” a supportive role he embraced during her years as a cheerleader at Massabesic High School in Waterboro. Her brother, Alex, played baseball for Massabesic High School.

She said her father was a kind, supportive parent who liked to have fun. The family made an effort each year to travel to Disney World in Florida, a trip that Schepis enjoyed coordinating.

She said she will always remember her freshman year when her father showed up at a cheerleading banquet dressed in a costume that looked like he was the abominable snowman.

“Nobody knew what was going on,” she recalled. “But I was never embarrassed by my dad. I went along with his jokes. We were goofballs together.”

“He was lighthearted and fun to be around,” Charland added.

The owners of the Cozi Corner Cafe said in a post on the restaurant’s Facebook page that out of respect for the families the restaurant was closed on Sunday and would not reopen until Wednesday.

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