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Cranbrook man picks up lottery ticket after volunteering shift, wins $4.9M jackpot

Click to play video: 'B.C. man wins big in Lotto 6/49' B.C. man wins big in Lotto 6/49
Douglas Lowes from Cranbrook B.C., got quite the shock when he checked his Lotto ticket. An impulse purchase after volunteering for the Salvation Army has changed his life forever – Dec 19, 2016

A 50-year-old Cranbrook man has his Christmas spirit to thank after winning a multi-million-dollar lottery jackpot.

Douglas Lowes says on Dec. 17, he had just finished his two-hour Christmas Kettle shift for the Salvation Army at the Canadian Tire in Cranbrook when he decided to get a Lotto 6/49 ticket.

“When I was done [the shift], I felt pretty good, so I walked into the mall and bought a ticket,” Lowes said.

Lowes works at a mine in Sparwood and loves volunteering in his spare time.

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He says he usually forgets about his lottery tickets and does not check them for weeks, but this weekend, a coworker texted him to say someone in Cranbrook won half of Saturday’s jackpot.

So Lowes checked his numbers and could not believe his eyes.

“I actually joked with the clerk at the kiosk when I was buying my ticket and said, ‘You know, I am just probably making a donation here.’ But it turned out — I was not!” he said.

He says the first order of business for him, his wife and two sons is a Christmas vacation in Cuba.

Lowes also says he plans to retire from his job and commit more fully to volunteering.

“I am 50 years old, why would I want to work if I don’t have to?” Lowes said. “I think I might take on a semi-professional volunteering gig. I really like that.”

Lowes says he plays the lottery on and off and almost always gets a “quick pick” instead of playing regular numbers.

Until Monday, the most he had ever won was $50.

Lowes says he hopes the money will be enough to help out some people in his community.

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He says three Cranbrook charities, including the Salvation Army, will benefit from his winnings.

“Volunteering is a great thing to do. Everyone should do more of it, help out and make their community a better place.”

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