Bothwell draw goes nuclear online

·2 min read

Who needs Lotto 649 or LottoMax when you’ve got the Bothwell-Thamesville Firefighters Association 50-50 draw?

Peter and Lynn Humphries don’t. The Bothwell residents took home $280,505 in Saturday’s record-breaking online draw.

“It’s a happy ending,” said Brian Carroll, chief of Chatham-Kent Fire Service Station 9 in Bothwell. “We sold tickets everywhere in Ontario,” he said.

“The winner could have been anywhere from Windsor to Wawa.”

The couple, who lives only two blocks from the fire hall, originally thought it was a hoax when they got the call.

Carroll said he spoke with Peter first, who informed him his wife had bought the ticket. When he got Lynn on the phone, he said she expressed disbelief at first, but then started screaming.

The Humphries plan on paying off debt and becoming mortgage free.

COVID-19 played a part in 2021 draw as the Bothwell Old Autos show was cancelled. For the past 30 years, the popular 50-50 fundraiser has been held at the event, but was moved online due to the pandemic.

To say the 50-50 defied expectations is an understatement.

In one week’s time sales skyrocketed in a viral frenzy going from around $25,000 to the final tally.

“My phone lit up every time there was a sale and it was constant the last few days,” Carroll said.

The proceeds from the draw will be spread out to area charities, he added, including local service clubs, area legions, youth groups, burn units or towards causes such as muscular dystrophy.

“We donate it all,” Carroll noted. “It’s a non-profit event and it’s all in fun.”

The fundraiser took in more than half a million dollars, making it the largest 50-50 draw ever held in Chatham-Kent.

Pam Wright, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Chatham Voice

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