The winner of Canada’s Lotto MAX $40,000,000 jackpot decided last week to donate the full sum of money to charity, to help those in greater need than him and his family.
Tom Crist was a recently retired president of an electronics company when he was notified he had won the $40,000,000 Canada Lotto MAX jackpot. Crist was surprised to learn of his win, as he doesn’t normally bother checking the numbers; he simply renews a subscription once a year with the Western Canada Lottery Corporation (WCLC). When the results were made known, the WCLC called him to deliver the news.
“I didn’t know what to think” said Crist, “I was speechless.”
His wife, Jan, passed away in February of 2012 after battling with cancer. After her death, Crist started a family foundation in her memory, aimed at supporting cancer treatment centers and research, starting with the Tom Baker Cancer Centre
“This was always my primary target, they cared for her, and it makes me feel so great to give back,” said Crist this Tuesday. He has donated to the Tom Baker Cancer Centre in the past, but this week he pledged a larger donation than usual, to the tune of $1.2 million.
Crist plans to donate every last penny of the jackpot he has won to various charities through his family foundation.
“I just retired at the end of September so I was fortunate enough in my career to set myself up and my kids anyway, and there was no doubt in my mind where that money was going to go, it was going to go to charity,” Crist shared with the Toronto Star when he claimed his prize last week.
Crist also mentioned that he has four kids who will help him decide which charities the money goes to.
“Cancer’s top of the list, but it’ll be other charities (too),” he said in an interview with the Calgary Herald. “It’s Phase 1 of many phases.”