Friends and co-workers of the Alberta man who is the apparent winner of $17 million in Wednesday's Lotto 6/49 draw said the story continues to be the talk of Outlook, Sask., where the lucky ticket was sold.
The winner, a 21-year-old working with a pipeline contracting firm on a project in rural Saskatchewan, remains unidentified by lottery officials who say they must go through a formal verification process before making any announcement.
Wednesday's 6/49 jackpot was worth just over $34 million. According to a spokeswoman for the Western Canada Lottery Corporation there were two winning tickets, one sold in Saskatchewan the other in Quebec. As of Friday afternoon, there was no official word on who the winners were.
But employees of Applus RTD, a company that specializes in pipeline testing, told CBC News on Friday that they believe one of their own, who they call Dollar Don, was a big winner.
"I thought it was a little bit of a practical joke," Derek Jackson, an Applus RTD worker, told CBC News Friday. "He actually was shaking, he was so worked up."
Jackson said it quickly became apparent that something special had happened to his young colleague.
"He had to take a seat in a chair," Jackson said. "The guy that was working with him explained to me that this was real and everything else."
The winner told Jackson that he showed up for work because he didn't want to leave the company in a lurch.
"He said he'd go back to work," Jackson explained. But it would not be for long, because he added: "Get me a replacement, 'cause I quit."
Jackson said Dollar Don then met his father in Regina, and the two flew home – first class.
"He's a very happy-go-lucky guy," Jackson added. "And fortune smiled upon him."