‘Ottawa’ Tilbury Couple Wins $26M Lotto MAX Jackpot
One little piece of cardstock — a lottery ticket — was all it took to change the lives of the Montminy family forever.
Tilbury residents Mike and Tricia Montminy are still reeling over holding the lone jackpot-winning ticket in the Lotto MAX draw of Feb. 17.
The prize: $26,037,102. And 70 cents.
According to the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation, the odds of the Montminy’s ticket matching all seven numbers to land the top payout were one in 28.6 million.
The Insurance Information Institute says your odds of dying in an earthquake in the U.S. this year are about one in 9.3 million.
Mike bought the ticket at Mr. Video & Convenience, 37 Queen St. S., in Tilbury — a store where he’s been a longtime customer.
He checked the ticket on Saturday morning, before he was supposed to go to work as a technician at Cottingham Tire.
“I stared at the numbers for about two minutes,” Mike told the Toronto Sun.
Naturally, instead of going to work, Mike rushed to a nearby Mac’s convenience store to put the ticket through an OLG self-scanner.
The machine validated the ticket as a jackpot winner. The OLG called the store immediately.
Mike called his wife — who works in human resources — with the incredible news.
“It’s just unreal,” Tricia told the Toronto Sun.
OLG spokeswoman Galit Solomon confirmed Tuesday that the corporation has been in touch with the claimant.
“We’ll have to go through the prize-claim review process before they’re declared the winner,” Solomon said. “It will be shortly — within the next couple days.”
“It’s not official yet.”
But the Montminys are already celebrating. According to the Toronto Sun, they took a limo ride to Windsor over the weekend to dine at a restaurant with friends.
They also visited Mr. Video & Convenience to whoop it up with store owner Greg Lee.
As for what comes next — they don’t know.
Both Mike and Tricia have already tendered their resignations to their employers.
They have two teenage children.
“We’ll probably get away for a couple of days, shut things off, and think about what we want to do,” Mike told the Sun.
Lotto MAX tickets are $5 per play. The next draw takes place Feb. 24 with an estimated jackpot of $10,000,000.
— with files by Gerry Harvieux