Lightning struck twice for a Canadian man who won big on two separate lottery tickets he bought just five months apart.
Melhig Melhig, 28, won about $2.7 million in two separate lottery ticket purchases at stores in Winnipeg, Manitoba, the Western Canada Lottery Corporation said.
Melhig first struck gold in April when he won about $1.2 million on a $20 instant lottery ticket bought at the RN Convenience Store.
The store was located near the small apartment Melhig lived in with his wife and children. The African immigrant’s first priority was to move his family into a home they could call their own.
“Everything is new,” he said. “We have a nice yard, good schools. We love it.”
Then in August, Melhig visited a Giant Tiger store to buy a game for his children.
When the clerk handed him a $20 bill as change for the toy, Melhig asked for a $20 Scratch ‘N Win ticket instead, officials said.
That ticket turned out to be worth $2 million.
“It’s amazing!” an elated Melhig said. “I feel so happy.”
Melhig said he plans to use the money he won the second time around to plan for his family’s future.
He is considering starting a business, noting he has floated the idea of opening a gas station or car wash.
“But my main goal is to go to school,” Melhig said. “I want to improve my English and communication. And I want to learn something useful, like carpentry.”
But one thing Melhig is not considering is resting on his laurels, he said.
“I’m young,” he said. “You always need to think about how to grow.”
Melhig is not the first Manitoban to win big.
In 2007, a woman won $1 million on a Set for Life ticket after winning the same prize on the same kind of ticket two years earlier. In both instances, the woman bought tickets when visiting Winnipeg to attend her grandson’s hockey tournament, authorities said.