It was a sweet payday for 18 Ottawa-area co-workers who shared a $7.1 million jackpot one day after 10 of them lost their jobs. The lucky men were at the Ontario Lottery and Gaming office in downtown Toronto on Friday to collect their check and share the winnings. They are expected to take home about $400,000 each after splitting the pot.
“I am going to use my share to pay off my mortgage,” said Tim Shanks, 33, who was laid-off and has four weeks of work remaining at Smart Technologies, in Ottawa, which is laying-off staffers and transferring its operations to Mexico. “The lottery winnings couldn’t have come at a better time for me and my family.”
Colin Willard, 49, said the group had been working together for 10 years and playing Lotto 6/49 for five. “We can’t believe our luck because we never thought that we would actually win,” Willard said. “I plan to pay off all my bills and take it easy a bit.”
Shaun Hogan, 33, said he will use some cash to return to school for retraining. “I want to change my life and do something else,” Hogan said. “I have been doing this job for years and now I want to do something else.” The money will come in handy given the layoff notices that went out, he said. “We are having the last laugh. I was always hoping for a big win.”