We've written many stories about people who have hit the jackpot on online slots, or won millions playing the lotto. But, perhaps, we've never been happier to report who won than this time round. Bill Pendergast and his wife deserve the C$1 million lottery win after losing their house in the 2016 Fort McMurray Wildfire.
Keep on reading to find out why.
The wildfire is less fondly known as ‘The Beast' among Alberta residents, and with good reason. In May of 2016, the fire started in Fort McMurray, Alberta and spread to Northern Alberta and even into Saskatchewan.
In the process, approximately 2,400 buildings were burnt down and 2000 residents had to evacuate. While the cost of damages is not precise, it's estimated that the figure is around C$9.9 billion.
Unfortunately, Pendergast, now 50 years of age, and his wife were among the residents who were forced to abandon their homes, and whose homes subsequently were destroyed. Their house is still undergoing repairs till today.
How did it happen?
However, it seems that the couple have finally caught their lucky break. When visiting his sick father in Newfoundland, Pendergast stopped at a local petrol station to buy a 7Up at his father's request. Purely on a whim, he also bought a Lotto 6/49 ticket, as so many of us have done in similar situations.
With one major difference.
Bill Pendergast had just bought himself the winning ticket for a massive C$1,000,000 jackpot prize.
It was Sunday, the 4th of February. He was staying at his aunt's house when he heard the news that the Lotto 6/49 had been won. More importantly, he also found out that the winning ticket was bought from a petrol station.
Quickly, he drove over to the station he had bought the ticket from. The station confirmed the winning ticket immediately.
From there, Pendergast called his wife who had stayed behind in Fort McMurray. As soon as they'd realised what had happened, she booked a flight from Alberta to Newfoundland to join her husband.
What's next for him?
The couple are planning on finishing up repairs on their house, and furnishing it. They also want to book a vacation to somewhere warm. And, after the previous two years, we think they richly deserve it.
Pendergast is reported to have commented:
“This is all like a dream.”
And while it is a dreamy event, the best part about it is that they never have to wake up from it.
In addition to repairs on their house and vacation, Pendergast is also looking forward to one very special treat:
“I have always wanted a Mustang, and I will finally have one, I'm 100% sure of that.”
We're pretty positive too, Bill. We wish you all the best and one heck of a vacation!