They Lost Their Daughter, Then They Won $1M
New Jersey couple will use the money to help raise their grandkids
By Linda Hervieux,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 13, 2017 7:33 AM CDT
Jackie and Rande plan to use their new fortune to help their late daughter's children.   (NJ Lottery)

(Newser) – A New Jersey couple raising their three young grandchildren after their daughter died of lupus have stumbled on an unexpected silver lining in a tragic situation. Jackie and Rande from Long Branch will bank a cool $1 million after hitting the Mega Millions jackpot, People reports. "I am just very grateful. This will help our lives out a lot," Rande tearfully said Wednesday at lottery headquarters. "This will be the beginning of good fortune to our family," says his wife. The couple, whose last name was not revealed, plan to spend some of the windfall on bills and the rest on ensuring a secure future for their grandchildren, per PIX11.

Married 17 years, the couple have faced difficult times before their luck turned when they bought the ticket at a convenience store and matched all five white balls drawn on March 31. They got the second-place prize. "They are the most deserving people in New Jersey," says a friend of the couple who drove them to claim their loot. "They have helped so many other people in their times of need and now it is their turn to receive this very necessary blessing." The winning numbers were 17-24-27-32-58. Had the couple opted for the "Megaplier" option, they would have banked $3 million, per PIX11. (A California teen hit the lottery twice in one week.)

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