Unlucky 51-year-old man dies just three weeks after winning a $1 million lottery

Unlucky 51-year-old man dies just three weeks after winning a $1 million lottery

Donald Savastano, a Queens, New York, resident bought the $10 scratch-off card just for the heck of it and ended up winning!

If he was alive, Donald Savastano would have told you about bad luck.

The 51-year-old New York resident died from cancer, just three weeks after winning a $1 million lottery.

A man got lucky with the lottery but then got unlucky (WBNG-TV)

Earlier this month, Savastano won the Merry Millionaire lottery for $1million after buying a $10 scratch-off card. However, he didn't live long enough to enjoy the perks of the win and passed away just 3 weeks after winning the prize.

Savastano won $1million on a $10 scratch-off card (WBNG-TV)

On January 26, Savastano was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer and died suddenly.

He is a native of Queens, New York (WBNG-TV)

The native of Queens, New York, Savastano bought the $10 scratch-off card just for the heck of it and ended up winning! He claimed the money on January 4.

Savastano claimed his prize money on Jan 4th (WBNG-TV)

He received a lump sum of $661,800 after taxes were deducted.

He got $661,800 after the tax was deducted (WBNG-TV)

The self-employed carpenter told WBNG-TV at the time of collecting the money: "Being a self-employed carpenter, I didn't really have a plan for retirement."

The cashier who gave the winning ticket to Savastano (Spectrum Local News)

"The money will help with that. I don't have any other extravagant plans. I'll buy a new truck, pay off some debt and invest for the future.

The supermarket where Savastano bought the ticket (Spectrum Local News)

Lester R. Grummons Funeral Home in Oneonta published an obituary on January 28, saying that  Savastano grew up in Long Island and learned carpentry from his father.

Savastano lived with his girlfriend and her two children for 10 years (Spectrum Local News)

Savastano, his girlfriend Julie Wheeler, and her two sons were living in Sidney, New York for the past 10 years. Savastano left behind a mother, two sisters, and four brothers.

Savastano leaves behind a mother and 6 siblings (Spectrum Local News)

The obituary also had a special thanks for Bassett Hospital and the Tri-Town ER for taking care of Savastano in his final days.

The man was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer shortly after he won the money (Spectrum Local News)

The note also mentioned that the man had been in hospice care for a few days before he finally passed away.

Savastano looked happy when a local news outlet interviewed him about his big win (Spectrum Local News)

Spectrum Local News interviewed Savastano when he won the prize money, and he looked happy. Little did he know that tragedy was about to befall him. 

The funeral took place on January 30 (Spectrum Local News)

The calling hours at the funeral home will be from 6 to 8 pm on January 30. If anyone wants to make donations, the family urges that they are made to the American Cancer Society.

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