Couple wins $50 million ahead of 30th anniversary
Published Tuesday, November 2, 2010 8:00PM EDT
A gay couple from Vancouver, who will mark their 30th anniversary next month, now have 50 million more reasons to celebrate after winning the latest Lotto Max draw.
Kurt Blanchette-Ebert, 63, and his partner Claude, 52, learned Saturday morning that they had won the $50-million jackpot but waited until Tuesday to claim the prize.
"Sunday is church and Monday I had no time," Kurt told CTV News from the offices of the B.C. Lottery Commission, after being presented with an oversized cheque for the couple's winnings. "Today is the day."
The pair bought the winning ticket at a local Mac's convenience store in Vancouver, and wound up matching all seven winning numbers.
Kurt said he couldn't believe his eyes when he checked his ticket at a machine, and said the win has only just begun to sink in.
"I kind of rubbed my eyes and looked again -- and the first thing I said was ‘Holy sh-t,'" he said.
Claude said that when Kurt told him they had won, his head "was so red I thought for sure he was going to explode."
"I just tried to get his blood pressure back down," Claude quipped.
Kurt was a pastry chef but quit his job earlier this week, while Claude has worked as an upholsterer.
The couple had planned to buy a second-hand car to celebrate their anniversary on Dec. 30. Now they're starting to think about buying a new house in Vancouver's pricey housing market.
They have also met with a financial planner, and say they'll spend conservatively and try to live off the interest of their investments.
In nearly 30 years, the couple has also never been on vacation together. But they may remedy that with a trip to the French Riviera.
"We just need to refocus right now," Claude said, adding that he was sorry for making the public wait to find out who won the $50 million prize.
With files from The Canadian Press