Man Donates Entire $40-Million Lottery Prize To Charity


Tom Crist. Image: WCLC
Tom Crist. Image: WCLC

If you hit the jackpot in a lottery, what would you do?

Last May Tom Crist, from Calgary, Alberta, was on the golf course with some friends when he got a phone call from the Western Canada Lottery organization.

They told him he had the winning ticket, and he’d won a lot of money.

He’d won $40 million.

Crist ended the call and he went right back to playing golf.

He didn’t tell anyone what had happened. He put it out of his mind.

His friends say that the only thing they noticed that day was that his golf game improved a little.

Crist didn’t even tell his four children or six grandchildren.

He didn’t want any attention from the media–he didn’t even want anyone to know he’d won the money.

He says he just wanted to quietly put the money in a fund so he could donate it to charity.

However, when Lotto Max gives out a big win their rules say they can make an announcement about it. Which is how everyone found out.

Crist didn’t want to be photographed–he wore sunglasses and a baseball cap to the announcement.

Crist has already given some of his money to charity and he said he intends to donate all of it.

On Tuesday, he gave $1.2 million to the Alberta Cancer Foundation. His wife of 33 years, Jan, died of cancer in February.

A spokesperson for the lottery organization said that lots of people who win donate some of their money to charity, but it’s rare for someone to donate all of it.

Crist’s son, Dallas, said his father is a humble man, who likes to help people.

By Kathleen Tilly

Writing/Discussion Prompt
The first sentence of this article is a question: “If you hit the jackpot in a lottery, what would you do?”

Answer this question clearly and specifically. Provide reasons why you would spend and/or donate the money in the ways that you chose.

Reading Prompt: Responding to and Evaluating Texts
Tom Crist’s son says his father is a humble man. Using information from this article, would you agree with his son’s description? Use evidence from the text to support your answer.

Express personal thoughts and feelings about what has been read (OME, Reading: 1.8).

Make judgements and draw conclusions about the ideas and information in texts and cite stated or implied evidence from the text to support their views (OME, Reading: 1.8).

Evaluate the effectiveness of both simple and complex texts based on evidence from the texts  (OME, Reading: 1.8).

Grammar Feature: Adjective
One adjective (describing word) that Crist’s son used to describe his dad was “humble”. What other adjectives can you think of to describe Crist?