An Unbelievable Dream Lottery

Grand Prize Winner Sue Murphy and husband Dennis Reed pose with their winningsDream Lottery had unbelievably good support this Fall, selling out on the November 21 Bonus Deadline. The Money and Memories Calendar component of the lottery sold out days earlier. The 50/50 soared to a record high $1,074,045.

London Health Sciences Foundation President & CEO John MacFarlane explained one reason for the hot sales pace is that – unlike some other lotteries – Dream proceeds stay local, adding “Thank you to everyone who supports their families, friends and neighbours by purchasing a ticket.”

Dream Lottery has now raised almost $39 million (net) since 1996 in support of Children’s Hospital at London Health Sciences Centre, St. Joseph’s Health Care London and LHSC.

“A big thanks to Dream supporters for helping our hospitals provide excellent patient care by funding advanced equipment, emerging technology, research, training and education,” says Children’s Health Foundation President & CEO Scott Fortnum.

With the early sellout, lottery rules allowed the final draw to be moved up, with the big reveal of the ultimate grand prize and the 50/50 winners taking place December 5. Like the sales results, the winners thought the draw results were unbelievable.

After thanking the lottery’s home builders, suppliers and retail partner Shoppers Drug Mart, St. Joseph’s Health Care Foundation President & CEO, Michelle Campbell revealed Aline Wirtanen of Sarnia (ticket number 5224625) as the 50/50 winner of $537,022.50.

Wirtanen didn’t answer the lottery’s first attempt to reach her, because she thought it was a marketer calling. When final reached and told of her win Wirtanen responded, “I was going to ask you if this is a joke.” Campbell assured her it was no joke, and Wirtanen agreed that it was going to be a very merry Christmas.

The ticket (number 010431) for the lottery’s ultimate grand prize was purchased by Sue Murphy of London. She won the choice between the $1.6 million Wastell Homes-built Magnolia Refined Rustic Dream Home furnished by Accents Home Furniture, the $1.45 million Highland Green Estates Dream Home by Reis Design + Build with interior design by Jillian Summers of Upstaging and furnishings by Accents Home Furniture, or $1 million in cash.

When Fortnum gave her the good news, her hesitant reaction was, “Sure?” When Fortnum listed her prize choices, she also asked, “Is this a joke?”

Later that morning, Murphy arrived at the home with her husband Dennis Reed. The long-time ticket-buyers say this is their first Dream Lottery win. They loved the homes but decided on the cash option. A Disney vacation with their grandkids is one dream that the windfall will make possible.

All winning numbers were drawn December 4, under the supervision of accountants of record at the London office of Deloitte LLP. The primary purchaser of each winning ticket will be contacted by phone and/or mail. The names of major prize winners are posted on-line at www.dreamitwinit.ca and a printed list of winners is also available upon request by calling 1-866-319-9818.

Winning names and numbers from the Money & Memories Calendar draws will be posted daily in February and March on the Dream Lottery website at www.dreamitwinit.ca and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dreamitwinit.