$25M Lotto winners keep their jobs

Susannah and Ron Higgs, of Orillia, pose with their $25-million cheque Monday. (Submitted photo)

Susannah and Ron Higgs, of Orillia, pose with their $25-million cheque Monday. (Submitted photo)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:28 AM ET

ORILLIA, ONT. - Ontario’s newest millionaires plan on keeping their jobs -- and giving half their winnings to their family.

Orillia’s Susannah Higgs, 56, and her husband, Ron, 59, won a $25 million Lotto Max jackpot last weekend by playing numbers they’ve used for years. The couple picked up their cheque Monday at OLG headquarters in Toronto.

“I wasn’t quite sure if it was a win or if it was advertising that someone in Orillia had actually won,” Susannah said, referring to how the lotto terminal in a local Daisy Mart flashed when she checked the winning ticket.

Come Tuesday morning, Ron intends to returning to his job work at a steel manufacturing company, while Susannah will return to her engineering company job on Wednesday.

“When you’re dreaming about it, you think ‘How would I react?’ and ‘How does that feel?’ and you really don’t know how it’s going to feel until it happens,” she said.

It’s not the first time the Higgs family, complete with three children, has won with the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. In 2000, Susannah’s Christmas stocking contained a much-appreciated Instant Crossword ticket that garnered them $10,000.

This year, the entire family got an early Christmas present as they gathered Sunday, when the Higgs divided up more than $12 million of their winnings.

“We told them how much we would be giving everybody and the ones that are close to retirement, they’re just elated,” Susannah said.

Ron says he was driving when he heard the news from his wife and daughter.

“Actually, I was on a business trip to Edmonton,” he said. “I’d just got off the plane.”

He recalled becoming emotional when he realized what they’d won: “I still can’t believe it.”

For now, the couple intend on wrapping their heads around their new-found wealth.

“We have four favourite charities that we’ll give to,” Susannah said. “I hope they’ll be happy.”

The winning numbers were 2, 3, 5, 22, 23, 32 and 33. The bonus number was 8.

In addition, three $1-million prizes were won by Ontarians and British Columbians.

This coming Friday’s Lotto Max draw is worth an estimated $20 million.