Winning the lottery doesn’t happen every day, but a pair of best friends who haven’t seen each other in months, are rejoicing in their lucky draw.
After winning the BC/49 draw on March 4, Courtenay’s Alan Barker and Langley’s Kathleen Cook are hoping for a dream reunion soon to celebrate their $2-million win.
The friends met in England in the 1950s and later moved to Canada with their spouses, and have been friends ever since.
One of their newest hobbies? Buying lottery tickets together.
“I was looking at the screen and was dumbstruck,” says Barker, remembering the moment when he discovered the pair had won.
“Even while I was walking out someone asked if it was the big winner. I still can’t believe it.”
Of course, the first person Barker told was his best friend Cook.
“I was surprised when Alan told me the winning ticket was in his hands, full of wonder and disbelief,” says Cook. “It took a long time to register.”
Barker’s grandson helped the over-joyed pair claim their $2 million through the BCLC’s alternate prize claim process, a new addition to the lottery organization, to help prize-winners claim their prizes from a distance amid COVID-19.
The Courtenay man is planning on donating some of the winnings to the local hospital to help purchase new equipment. He says he might also move into a “posher” assisted living home.
Cook on the other hand says she will use the money to help her family members to make their lives easier and more convenient.
With the top prize at $2 million, British Columbians have claimed more than $6.3 million in BC/49 prizes since the start of the year.