Special to Bullet News
It was an interesting New Years Day for Stanley and Lottie Czaplicki. The Niagara Falls couple had scanned their LOTTO 6/49 ticket from the December 29, 2012 draw and thought they had a winning ticket for $15,500. Stanley went to bed excited about his windfall, after they had double checked the ticket themselves at a few different locations. It wasn’t until the next morning, when he validated the ticket at a local store, that he discovered they had actually won $15.5 million.
“There was a woman standing next to me at the counter, and she looked at the printout the retailer had given me and said ‘that’s not $15 thousand that’s $15 MILLION!’ I was speechless,” said the 83-year-old, who spent 32 years working in automobile manufacturing plants in Ontario.
His wife Lottie had already done the math, when she picked up the local paper and noted that the headline was declaring ‘a millionaire walking amongst us.’
“I realized when Stanley was out that we might have won a much larger amount. When he came in the door, he didn’t say anything at first, until I asked him about what happened at the store. He was speechless. He couldn’t remember anything,” Lottie said. “I was surprised that he stopped at Canadian Tire on the way home.”
The couple has been playing LOTTO 6/49 for three decades and is sure that fate has intervened in their story.
“Stanley almost died last year. Now we know that he was supposed to live, so that we could win the lottery,” said Lottie, who is in her mid-seventies.
While Stanley has already told his kids they’re going to be millionaires, Lottie has been practical about her dreams.
“We live in a great neighbourhood right now, so I wouldn’t want to move. However, I would love to be able to retrofit our house to be more comfortable for living as a senior,” she said.
This is the 40th winning LOTTO 6/49 jackpot ticket in Ontario in 2012, for a total of over $218 million in jackpot prizes.
The winning ticket was purchased at Metro grocery store on Montrose Road in Niagara Falls.