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Three Toronto-area Costco workers splitting $1 million prize after huge lottery win

"Three Costco employees walk into a Longo's" seems like the start of a very grocery-specific joke, but it was actually the supermarket trip of a lifetime for a trio of Toronto-area big-box store employees, who are now splitting a $1 million prize after a fateful lottery ticket purchase.

The group of Costco employees — Andre Nicholson of Concord, Aileen Mendoza of Toronto, and Ponrose (Rose) Antonipillai of Woodbridge — purchased a MAXMILLIONS ticket at Longo's on Rutherford Road in Woodbridge, one that would ultimately win the $1 million prize in the October 11, 2022 LOTTO MAX draw.

The trio takes turns purchasing tickets for the group, but it was Andre Nicholson who received the shock of his life upon checking their ticket using the OLG App.

Bleary-eyed and just off his night shift, he wasn't initially convinced that what he was seeing was, in fact, a $1 million prize on the app.

"I saw $1 million but couldn't believe it, and scanned it several times," said Nicholson.

Next, he realized he needed to contact his friends with the big news, and to have them double-check that this was really happening.

"Then Rose and Aileen scanned it to see for themselves."

That's when the group knew they had just scored a million dollars, collectively, at least.

Rose says she was "speechless" at the revelation, while Aileen says her prayers have been answered. Andre calls the win "a blessing."

Members of the group all have their own ideas on how to spend their third of the million — or $333,333.33. Aileen will use her share to pay off some bills, Rose will use her portion to help her children, and Andre plans to use some of his winnings to help others and give back to the community.

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