N.S. couple gives away $11M in lottery winnings
Editor's note: This news story was first published in 2010. Internet operations continue to link to this article to solicit funds from unsuspecting targets. The lottery funds have been distributed to charities and there is no reason to pursue any emails you may have received on the matter.
A Nova Scotia couple didn't play the lottery expecting to win, and when they did hit the jackpot it was an easy decision to give the money away.
Allen and Violet Large, of Lower Truro, N.S., won an $11.2-million Lotto 649 jackpot on July 14.
Now it's almost all gone, given to family members and local charities, hospitals and volunteer and community groups.
"We had to think about it before we made our decision, then we totalled up what we were giving away and that's how we did it," Violet Large told CTV News Channel.
First the couple, who are in their seventies, decided to help family members, giving everyone the same amount "so there was no quibbling. And we enjoyed every minute of it."
Violet wouldn't say how much they gave to relatives, only saying that "family came first" and that "it was a good chunk."
Next on the list was hospitals and medical clinics.
"My health is going downhill, I've had cancer and we gave a lot to Halifax because that's where I had my chemotherapy and that's where I went to the clinic and that's where I had my operations and we'd go to the Truro hospital because I hurt my leg and they did the dressing on my leg," Violet said.
"There are so many things that they did for us that we're trying to pay back."
From there it was churches, cemetaries, fire brigades and organizations that help those with diabetes or heart and stroke troubles. The Larges only kept about 2 per cent of the winnings for themselves.
"As I say you can't buy your health and you can't buy happiness but if you can help someone out that's what you want to do," she said.
The story has been generating interest around the world since local media first reported it this week.
The couple has also been receiving calls from well-wishers and reporters across Canada.
When asked why they continued to play the lottery if they had no intention to keep the money, Violet said they played for fun.
"You do it more for a little enjoyment," she said. "You don't buy tickets as if you're going to win or else you'd be long gone because you never win that much."