Leftover change after grocery shopping turns New Zealand dad into multi-millionaire

Photo from Thomas Coker via Unsplash

A man in New Zealand ran to the store for two household staples but came home with a much more valuable item: a jackpot-winning lottery ticket.

“I was sent to the supermarket to buy some eggs and milk,” the man from Auckland told Lotto NZ in a Friday, Jan. 20 news release. “Afterwards I had some change left over so I thought I might as well buy a (lottery) ticket.”

The man, who chose to stay anonymous, told lottery officials he doesn’t play regularly but usually buys a Powerball ticket if the jackpot is over $12 million.

The next day, he was on his way to the grocery store and saw the lottery ticket laying on the mantelpiece, the release said. He decided to check if he’d won anything.

“I handed my ticket to the Lotto operator, and it came up with ‘Major Prize,’” he said. “I thought, ‘What’s that, about $1,000?’”

The winning lottery ticket, however, was worth much more. He won just over $15 million, lottery officials said. “I cried for three hours!” he said, according to the release.

Immediately, he called his wife and son to tell them the good news, according to the release. Both were skeptical and had him “checking the receipt a couple more times and counting the zeros!”

“New Zealand’s newest multi-millionaire” said the prize will help him take care of his family, per the release.

If you or a loved one shows signs of gambling addiction, you can seek help by calling the national gambling hotline at 1-800-522-4700 or visiting the National Council on Problem Gambling website.

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