29-year-old mother wins $2M on lottery ticket she received as a gift

A 29-year-old Ontario mother of two said she is in shock after winning $2 million from a lottery ticket she received as a gift.

Woodbridge woman Tonicia James said she has a New Year’s tradition with her partner where they buy lottery tickets for each other.

In the days after receiving her Instant $2 Million Extreme ticket, James said she scanned it on the OLG app.

She originally thought she won $2,000, but she said she quickly went into shock when she “saw all the zeros.”

“I felt like I was dreaming,” James told the OLG while receiving her winnings in Toronto.

James said she plans to purchase a home with her prize, and may also take a trip to Cuba.

The winning ticket was purchased at Petro Canada on Jane Street in Concord, the OLG said.

It’s not the first time someone has won big on a ticket purchased for them as a gift around the holiday season.

In 2022, a Welland, Ont. woman won $250,000 on a lottery scratch card given to her in a “Secret Santa” gift exchange at work.

Jennifer Lafleur said she scratched the ‘Merry & Bright’ lottery ticket when she got home from work on the first night of her Christmas holidays and said her heart starting pounding when she realized she had won.

She told the OLG she texted her husband immediately and told him to come home.

“I passed him the ticket and he asked if it was real, then gave me a big hug,” the 41-year-old told the OLG.

The health industry employee said she plans to pay part of her mortgage and also put money aside for her children’s education.

“I’d also like to invest and save some for a family vacation,” she said. “I have lots of decisions to make.”

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