02/07/2013 17:54 EST | Updated 04/09/2013 05:12 EDT

$30M lottery winners collect cheque of a lifetime

Gord and Betty Collins of Placentia, the winners of the biggest lottery prize in Newfoundland and Labrador history claimed their $30-million cheque on Thursday in St. John's.

Gord Collins, a semi-retired pharmcist, said he had the ticket for a week before his wife, Betty urged him to check the numbers.

"I've never won anything, you know," said Gord Collins. "A few free tickets and every three or four months you win a $10-bill. So I mean, I've often had my ticket in my pocket for weeks on end without checking them."

When Collins told his wife, she didn't believe it.

"No, no way, can't be true, no, not us," laughed Betty Collins.

Announcment made almost two weeks after draw

Atlantic Lottery Corp. made the official winner announcement on Wednesday, almost two weeks after the Jan. 25 Lotto Max draw was held.

Gord and Betty Collins came forward this past weekend, amid rampant rumours around the province about who the winner - or winners - were.

The second prize of $400,000 from the same draw was claimed by Joe and Colleen Gulliver of St. John's.

Atlantic Lottery officials said it's rare for the two top prizes to be won in the same province.

Adjustment necessary, says jackpot winner

The couple's immediate plans are to visit family in Ontario and then head somewhere where they don't have to shovel snow.

As for the rest of the winnings, the couple hope to share it with family.

The pharmacist has taken two weeks off to deal with the excitement of the lottery win, and now, Gord Collins said he plans to fully retire, and adjust to life on a substantially larger income.

"My biggest concern is that we can no longer go back to our old lifestyle, which was a very rich, fulfilling lovely lifestyle," reflected Collins. "So, I mean, there's got to be a new normal, and what that is, I don't know."