A group of 26 best friends and neighbours from Garson are splitting a $10-million windfall after winning the Oct. 13 Lotto Max jackpot.
“It feels like we won the lottery twice – the first time, when we all became friends – and now this. It’s a dream come true to be here with each other,” said group leader Eric Fournier, on behalf of the other 25 members.
Fournier said he usually buys the Lotto Max tickets, but on this occasion, it was his wife, Amber, who did the shopping.
“We still can’t believe this is real,” she said.
Group member Mike Crepeault discovered the big win first. He used the OLG Lottery app and then shared the good news with his wife, Sherry.
“I was jumping around our kitchen,” he said.
The news spread fast and an impromptu street party followed.
Today is jackpot payday after all 26 friends flew to Toronto to pick up their big prize.
“I still have butterflies in my stomach,” said group member Nicole Sloan.
Amy Hauser calls the win “a gift.”
“So many lives will be changed – more family time, less overtime,” she smiled.
The group includes dads, moms, firefighters, miners, a teacher, a nurse, hair dresser, construction worker, young families and longtime couples who’ve played together for about two years and promise to keep on playing together.
All have big plans for their big win. There will be new trucks, new cars and new SUVs parked in driveways – and maybe a few new snowmobiles, too.
While some winners are considering breaking ground in spring for new swimming pools, others already have their sights set on lakefront property. Mortgages will be paid off and education funds topped up. Travel is also high on the wish list – including family vacations and couples-only getaways.
Winners Trevor Gibbons and Kyla Roach have an extra special trip to plan.
“We’re getting married next summer and our honeymoon will be amazing!”
“These friends are like family and they mean the world to me,” said Adam Webber.
The whole group agreed.
“It’s one thing to dream about winning the lottery, but when it actually happens, and with your very best friends, that’s the icing on the cake.”
The group members are:
The winning ticket was purchased at Shell on Lasalle Boulevard in Sudbury.