Ken and Susan Salter of Telkwa are $20 million richer after winning an Oct. 29 Lotto 6/49 Max jackpot.
The British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC) made the announcement Nov. 8 with a cheque presentation in Kamloops.
The long-time Telkwa residents matched all seven numbers to win.
In a press release BCLC notes that Ken said it almost didn’t happen.
“I don’t often play the Lotto Max draw on Tuesdays, but I had a winning ticket for $20 from the previous Friday draw, so I thought I’d play the Tuesday draw,” he said.
When Ken found out they were the big winners, he said he was “shaking like a leaf.”
“I overheard the store clerk talking about a $20 million dollar winner in the Stikine region,” he said. “I came up to her and said ‘you might want to scan this ticket’ with a grin on my face.”
Susan, couldn’t believe it, the press release said.
“At first there was nothing but dead silence, so I thought something was wrong,” she said. “But then he whispered really quietly ‘we just won $20-million dollars’, and then I thought he was joking.”
The winning ticket was validated at the Tyhee Market in Telkwa.
Katie Savage is co-owner of the market with her mother, Cindy.
She said Ken validated what turned out to be the winning ticket at the end of the lunch rush on Oct. 31.
“He’s a regular customer here in our store, comes in [and] buys Lotto Max tickets every week and he came in and asked actually where the winning ticket was sold and I was, like, the Lotto guy told us it was in the Stikine region, there’s maps all out there saying it’s out by Atlin and the Alaska border.
“He was like, are you sure? And I’m, like, well that’s what we were told and that’s what’s in the news.”
But once Savage’s employee scanned the ticket, the terminal froze up.
“Twenty million popped up on the screen, she yelled at me and my mom saying I don’t know what to do, what’s happening, the whole thing’s frozen.
“We came over and looked and it was, like, oh my gosh — counting the zeroes: one, two, three, four, five, six … you’re like, that’s 20 million dollars!”
Ken was in disbelief.
“He was, like, oh my gosh, are you serious … he was just shaking, like he couldn’t even grasp that he had won at that moment,” Savage said.
“He was still in shock when he left our store, and he was probably here for about 45 minutes.”
The store called BCLC to confirm the win, get the machine unlocked and give Ken all the info he needed to pick up his winnings.
Ken was back the very next day to buy some more Lotto Max 6/49 tickets.
The Salter family told BCLC they have no plans to leave the village of Telkwa. They plan to build their dream home on their existing property and take a river cruise in Europe to celebrate.
The winning numbers were: 10, 17, 18, 22, 23, 25, 34 and bonus number 37. Tuesday draws were launched in May, with jackpots capped at $70 million.