Man wins lottery after Palm Sunday breakfast with granddaughter

CLEMMONS, North Carolina -- A woman is celebrating big after her grandfather won the lottery and gave her his winnings.

Peter Beckage, 85, had just finished up a Palm Sunday pancake breakfast with his granddaughter, Kelly Thomas, when he decided to play his "go-to" lottery game, Lucky for Life.

The man said he stayed up late Monday night to see if he had a winner.

"When I got all five (numbers), I couldn't believe it," he said. "I had a hard time getting back to sleep, I was so excited."

After winning, Beckage said he immediately knew what to do with the money: give it to his 22-year-old granddaughter.

"I knew if I ever won anything big, I would share it," said Beckage. "I'm happy with the little wins, and I'm so happy this is a gift I can give to her."

The next morning, Beckage said he was at church, unable to focus on his prayers, when he texted his daughter with his plan.

The pair then waited for Thomas to get home from volunteering to tell her about the big surprise.

"Kelly, how would you like to have $25,000 a year for the rest of your life?" Beckage recalled.

To which she replied, "Oh my gosh, Grandpa, did you win the lottery?"

After taxes, Thomas will receive $17,688 a year for the rest of her life.

She said she plans to use the money for tuition, books and food as she studies to become an elementary school teacher at UNC-Wilmington.

"To be able to focus on something I'm passionate about, thanks to my grandpa, is an amazing gift," said Thomas. "I've always dreamed of being a Catholic school teacher and helping people. This money makes it possible for me."
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