WEEDSPORT | Richard Loveless was going through his usual Sunday routine on Oct. 18 when he learned that a winning $42.5 million Lotto ticket was sold the day before at the Pit Stop convenience store — the same business where he purchases his Lotto tickets.
When the retired electrician from Port Byron checked the winning numbers — 1, 9, 11, 16, 19, 22 — he was stunned.
He won the lottery.
Loveless, 64, returned to Pit Stop Wednesday where the New York Lottery's Yolanda Vega revealed publicly that he won the $42.5 million jackpot on Oct. 17. He recalled the moment when he realized his ticket had the winning numbers.
"I scared the crap out of my wife," he said. "I ran into the bedroom and said, 'Sandy, Sandy.' She thought something was wrong with the dog. She said, 'What?' I said, 'I hit the lottery.'"
Loveless' wife was surprised. He had to repeat the life-changing news he just shared with his wife.
"She started screaming," he said.
On his Lotto ticket, Loveless used a mix of numbers that are important to him — mostly anniversaries and birthdays of family members. The winning numbers represented his parents' birth dates.
His dad was born on Nov. 16, 1919 — 11, 16, 19 — and his mother was born on January 9, 1922 — 1, 9, 22.
"Talk about divine intervention," Vega said.
Loveless isn't the only lottery winner in his circle of friends. Susan Garner, one of his childhood friends from Baldwinsville, won a $2.8 million Lotto jackpot with her brother in 1995. Another friend, Sharon Zuke Jackson, of Phoenix, Oswego County, split a $15 million Lotto jackpot with two of her siblings in 1997.
He also has a connection to another trio of lottery winners. He worked at New Process Gear in East Syracuse. Three employees at the plant won a $26 million Mega Millions drawing in 2010.
After his lottery win, Loveless opted for the lump sum payment. After taxes, he will receive more than $19.5 million.
With his winnings, Loveless said he will pay off his mortgage and his daughter's student loans. He also wants to finish work on his garage.
While he doesn't know what else he'll do with the money, he knows one thing: His wealth won't change who he is.
"I want to stay the way I am," he said. "I'm a blue-collar worker and I want to die that way."