Gregory Mathieu, 22, is now $70 million richer after winning the biggest Lotto Max jackpot in the history of Quebec.
Mr Mathieu, from Lévis in Eastern Quebec, gladly accepted the mammoth cheque from Loto-Quebec along with seven of his family members.
He was just finishing his shift at an IGA grocery store when he decided to verify his lottery ticket, which he had bought on a whim on 25th February, a few days after the jackpot was drawn.
The machine started going off with the unmistakeable sound of a winning ticket, but Mr Mathieu had to ask the cashier to confirm that what he was seeing was true.
Indeed, he had the winning jackpot ticket in his hand!
The Family’s Reaction To The Win
Upon receiving the tremendously good news, Mr Mathieu called his mother Sandra Julien, who could not believe her ears, and thought her son was playing a bad joke. She asked to speak to his co-worker to confirm that it was true.
Although the winning ticket was a quick-pick (a ticket with a randomly-generated set of numbers), Mrs Julien said that there was still a special significance to it as it was purchased on the 25th – the birthday of her eldest sister, Mr Gregory’s godmother, who had died 10 years previously.
Eerily enough, the winning digits included the number 10.
Lottery playing is part of the family’s tradition, and even after scooping up this mega windfall, some of Mr Gregory’s family members have said that it won’t stop them from trying their luck again.
In fact, one of his sisters has been buying tickets with her husband, using the same numbers over and over again for 26 years, and says she has no intention of giving up now.
After all, lightning could very well strike twice!
Free From Financial Troubles – Forever!
Like most 22-year-olds who are still finding their feet in the world, Mr Mathieu was not exactly in the most comfortable financial situation. At the grocery store, he used to earn $12.55 an hour, and was worried all the time about how he could afford to move out of the family home into an apartment on his own.
The only difference between him and most early 20-somethings is that he is now an overnight millionaire, and never has to worry again about where the next check is coming from.
He described the bonanza as “a big weight lifted off [his] shoulders”, and said that his plans for the money included buying a new car to replace his current one, which has seen better days, and going on vacation with his family.
Mr Mathieu insists money can’t buy happiness, and that his family members are the most important people in his life, something which no amount of money will ever change.
But he’s probably not going back to that grocery bagger job any time soon.