Imagine having one phone call completely change your life.
That’s what happened to Tucson resident Janet McGee on a Wednesday afternoon. She was sitting at her computer printing out postage for a bill that was past due. As she was frantically trying to race to the post office, the phone rang. She almost didn’t answer it.
“I picked it up. Kathy Rice identified herself and told me I was Grand Prize winner #2 of TMC’s Mega Raffle. I thought maybe someone was playing a trick on me, but I recognized her voice from the commercials.” Stunned, amazed, and in tears, Janet set the phone down and ran to tell her husband Gary. “He couldn’t believe it either,” she said.
Not bad, considering Janet didn’t purchase her tickets until after the Early Bird drawing. “I decided to actually buy tickets because it was a great cause, with great odds. I bought three tickets for $250, and then I put it out of my mind. There were so many prizes, I just wanted to win something. I had a feeling I may win, but I thought it would be a weekend getaway. I never imagined it would be the 2nd grand prize!” It’s pretty impressive for a woman who’s never won more than $2 while playing the lottery!
The task now: Decide if they’re going to accept the keys to an A.F. Sterling home in southwest Tucson, and $50,000 cash, or just walk away with $336,000 cash.
It was a dream come true for the newlyweds, and the timing could not have been more perfect.
Janet has been unemployed for more than a year after spending 19 years working in Human Resources for a children’s behavioral health company. Gary, a retired corrections officer, has been on disability. Financially, Janet says, things have been extremely tough.
The pair met on match.com five years ago. In August of last year, Gary was diagnosed with three terminal brain tumors. Three months later, the couple decided to tie the knot. “We ran off to Las Vegas and had a very fun Elvis wedding. I wanted to marry him so that I could help take care of him and give him everything he needs,” said Janet. Gary, who was born at TMC, is now bed-bound.
Will they choose the house, or cash? At this point she’s unsure. The first order of business: talk to an accountant. “There’s a lot to figure out in regards to what is the best decision for us to make, but believe me – it’s not a bad problem to have,” Janet laughed.
Congratulations, Janet and Gary!
Thank you to everyone who helped support patient care at TMC by purchasing Mega Raffle tickets. The TMC Mega Raffle will be back next year!