Located in Southwick, Massachusetts is the Lucky Stop convenience store and its owners discovered a winning lottery ticket worth $1 million in a stack of discarded tickets. They could have chosen to keep it or give it to a family member. Instead, they decided to return it to the woman who had purchased it from them and tossed it aside accidentally. This act of integrity was both inspiring and heartwarming. At the end of March, a Diamond Millions ticket worth $30 was bought by Lea Fiega. She didn’t scratch off the ticket fully. Had she done so, she would have realized that the two matching numbers meant she had won $1 million.
She said that she had been on her lunch break and in a hurry, so she scratched it quickly, gave it a look, and thought it wasn’t a winner. Therefore, she handed it over for it to be discarded. For 10 days, it remained in the wastebasket, until the store owners went through them before throwing them away permanently. The store owner’s son, Abhi Shah, said that he had been going through the tickets that were to be discarded and discovered that the ticket wasn’t fully scratched. Upon scratching, he discovered that it was worth $1 million.
He became a millionaire for one night and thought of the things he could use the money for. However, the family consulted together the next morning and even reached out to India for getting input from Shah’s grandparents. As Fiega was a regular, the Shahs were aware that the ticket had belonged to her. They were also aware that she obviously hadn’t planned on tossing out a prize of $1 million. Shah said that his grandmother said it wasn’t right to keep the ticket and should be returned. She said that if it belonged to them, they will get it somehow.
They decided to do exactly that and Fiega was quite surprised when Abhi went to her office and asked her to come to see his parents. They told her and she was in utter disbelief. She had already felt lucky because she nearly died earlier in the year after she contracted the coronavirus. It was unbelievable to get the news from her convenience store that she had tossed out a million dollars accidentally and the owners were returning them. She said she was blessed and the Shahs were undoubtedly kind people.
She said that she had given part of her winnings to the family and was saving the rest for her retirement. The state lottery commission also paid $10,000 to the store owners for selling the winning ticket. Other regular customers of the store said that they weren’t really surprised by the selflessness and the kindness of the Shahs in returning the ticket. A customer said that they are good people and they had set an excellent example of doing the right thing, even they didn’t really have to. They have just given everyone a boost of faith in humanity.