New Zealand man who lost his job during lockdown has won $10.3 million thanks to playing the lottery.
The Kiwi, who has chosen to keep his identity private, like most winners in New Zealand, was one of the thousands of Kiwis who has unfortunately been made redundant due to the CoVid-19 pandemic lockdown.
His wife, however, has worked non-stop over the two-month lockdown as she is a healthcare worker.
Speaking to lottery officials, he told them that when his wife came home from work for a quick lunch break, she found him sitting at the kitchen table and according to her he was "acting strange".
"There was an envelope waiting for me in my spot... it was a bit awkward," she said.
"He told me to open the envelope — inside was a newspaper clipping of an article saying someone from Hamilton had won $10.3 million.
"I said, 'why are you showing me this?' He replied with, 'it's us, we are the winners.' I thought he was joking."
She refused to believe him and he had to eventually show her their winning lottery ticket on his phone.
"I'll never forget that moment — it felt too good to be true. It was very emotional," said his wife.
The couple are still coming to terms with the life-changing lottery win and decided that they would opt to stay anonymous.
He told lottery officials that the jackpot win could not have come at a better time.
"I lost my job at the beginning of the lockdown, so we've been really worried about our future, particularly the impact it would have on our retirement, and our children's education."
He said that at first, he thought that the email he received was spam.
"My wife was at work, so I asked someone else in our bubble to check it for me to make sure I wasn't seeing things," he said.
"They confirmed: 'Yep, that definitely says you've won $10 million.'"
That’s when he got really excited. He knew that his wife was coming home for a quick bite to eat and couldn’t wait to tell her about his incredible news.
"I wasn't sure how she would react — I cut out the article and popped it in an envelope for her. It was nerve-wracking watching her open it," he said.
The couple celebrated their lottery win that evening with a bottle of bubbly while discussing how exactly they would spend their newfound millions.
Top of the list was paying off their mortgage and supporting their child's university education.
A central focus for the pair is that they use their money to help others in need, vowing to remain as "normal" as possible.
"We feel incredibly lucky and want to set ourselves up for the future, but also look at how we can help others," she said.
"We're still in shock, these types of things don't happen to people like us."
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