An ex-couple from Toronto won a life-changing $44,023,273.40 in the Lotto Max jackpot from the July 20, 2021 draw.
Elizabeth Lumbo and her ex-husband Arlene Lumbo, who now consider each other best friends, split the jackpot evenly.
Elizabeth was the person who bought the lottery tickets in the relationship.
"The numbers that won this prize were selected by my daughter and comprised of family birthdates," she said at the OLG Prize Centre in Toronto when picking up her share of the winnings.
Elizabeth found out she and her ex-husband were jackpot winners when she checked the lottery tickets while running errands.
"I heard the jingle play on the Ticket Checker and when I looked at the screen, I told the clerk something was wrong with the machine," she said. "When I realized we won $44 million, tears started running down my cheeks."
"Our children couldn’t believe it, so I sent them a photo of my ticket. They were so happy for us!"
The priority for Elizabeth, Arlene and their children is to find a property where they can all live in their own homes, but close by.
"It’s a beautiful thing to have raised children who have plans on how they want to build their lives," Elizabeth said.
"Now we can make that happen. I feel overwhelmed with gratitude. I am humbled by this blessing."
Elizabeth, a customer service representative, plans to work for a few more years but then she wants to spend her time traveling, when it is safe to do so. She also wants to keep playing Lotto Max.
“I’m still going to play Lotto Max! I don’t want to miss out on the fun – and the winning jingle on the lottery terminal is a tune I love to hear now!" she said.
Lotto Max players in Ontario have won over $6.7 billion since 2009, including 88 jackpot wins and 721 Maxmillions prizes.
Tools to stop gambling
If you're looking to take a break from gambling, self-exclusion programs can be effective tools. See here for resources that are available across Canada.