Thunder Bay, ON – “Get our tickets ready. We’re going to win.” said Suzanne Gribben, on the phone to her sister Paulette Howe last Thursday night. “I need you to call me tomorrow morning when we do.”
For her part, Paulette said, “The timing was a bit off. I knew I wouldn’t be available right at draw time, but I didn’t think too much of it. I kind of laughed it off.”
Little did they know that their lives were about to change.
On Friday morning, the morning of February’s Grand Prize draw, Paulette had been out skiing in the morning and wasn’t having a great day. “I did a complete yardsale,” she recalled, “but luckily, after picking myself up, and checking to see if I had any broken bones, I determined I was ok. I got myself back together, and went home. By the time I got there I was hungry, and a bit grumpy. You know how it is. When you’re tired and you want something to eat, and your body is feeling a bit sore, your mind just isn’t at its most positive.”
But soon after getting home she noticed a missed call, and saw an email to contact Glenn at the Health Sciences Foundation.
“I didn’t even take my jacket off,” she said. “I knew this was something that needed immediate attention. I called him right away.”
The rest… as they say… is history.
“Of course I was in absolute disbelief after I got off the phone with Glenn.” Paulette said, “One never expects to win. Really. I’ve never won anything in my life.”
As soon as she hung up the phone she knew she needed to tell Suzanne ASAP. “I couldn’t call her though,” she said. “This was news that needed to be delivered in person! But, the drive up Rosslyn Road, from my house to Suzanne’s house, that normally takes me 7 minutes, felt like it took 4 hours. It was just so slow that day.”
Eventually the sisters connected and could not contain their excitement.
“To be honest, the past 3 days, my brain has just been in this fog,” said Paulette. “It’s slowly starting to sink in that we won.”
“We’re so very grateful for this prize, and so happy to know that the net proceeds of the draw will support the Hospital,” said Suzanne and Paulette.
As for plans for their winnings?
“My husband already has a list,” laughed Suzanne.
“Also, travel!” said Paulette. “As soon as we can we would love to do some big trips – like New Zealand, a river cruise through Europe or even maybe South Africa.”
“We’ve traveled together with our spouses for years,” said Paulette, “and we can’t wait to celebrate this win with another trip.”