The local winner of a LottoMax MaxMillions jackpot has chosen to donate a large portion of her $1 million prize to Western University.
Maria Stuhlemmer, a now retired Londoner, won a $1 million MaxMillions prize in the Sept. 2 Lotto Max draw. After previously expressing interest in potentially funding a university scholarship, she now says that contracts have been drawn up and $700,000 of the money will be donated to Western.
Stuhlemmer, almost 80 years old, lives with her 90-year-old husband who she has been married to for 58 years. He was the first to hear about the winnings.
"We are both hardworking common folks; we have worked hard our whole lives," Stuhlemmer said. "We have two children and grandchildren. We are very sick and very tired. I am crippled with one arm and my husband is crippled with one leg."
Stuhlemmer initially splurged on a limousine ride from Toronto to London after claiming her prize at the OLG Prize Centre.
"I would like to help people. [A scholarship] helps people that are poor and have nothing," Stuhlemmer said. "It helps newcomers who come over from different countries and have nothing. The best way to help people is to help a doctor, because helping a doctor can help thousands more people."
The winning ticket was purchased at a Shoppers Drug Mart on Richmond Street but Stuhlemmer waited a week before checking her ticket.
"I always buy a ticket. Every week, one ticket. Our pensions are so little that we couldn't afford gambling. We were hoping God would reward us," Stuhlemmer said.