Would You Give Away $11.3 Million?

A retired Canadian couple won a $11.3 million lottery jackpot back in July. And now, in October, they have almost none of that windfall left for their own use. Why? Because they chose to give the majority of it away, reserving 2% of their winnings for their own savings.

Nova Scotia residents Allen and Violet Large, who are in their late 70s, won the money in July and immediately they started receiving phone calls from people asking them for money. (The nerve of some people continues to astound me.) They then decided that rather than possible be taken advantage of, they’d use their good fortune to help others in need.

First, they took care of family. Then, they made donations to a large number of charitable organizations. All this as the wife, Violet, was recovering from a round of chemotherapy. The pair have been excellent at saving their money prior to retirement and had no pressing need for the lottery winnings.

Off-topic: I’ll reserve judgment on the headline of the Yahoo article: “Nicest Canadian couple in the world dole out lottery winnings” — I’m not sure that the “world” is full of “Canadian” couples.

I don’t know if I — or anyone else I know, for that matter — would be that generous after winning millions of dollars. Sure, there would be some donations, and I’d love to pay off immediate family members’ debts, but give all of it away? I don’t think that would happen.

Would you be able to give $11.3 million away?

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9 comments to Would You Give Away $11.3 Million?

  • Liz Greeley

    I don’t think I could, but it does teach me a big lesson that happiness is what you make of it…

  • HELL NO :)

    I mean, why would I play the lottery in the first place if not to win the money? Unless as eemusings pointed out on Twitter, they planned on doing that in the first place (it doesn’t really sound like that though).

    I think I’d clear other debts, donate and bank the rest for my kids & my retirement. I’d still work though — I find my job interesting.

  • Red

    No way! I mean, I can imagine giving SOME of it to charity, especially things I care a lot about – like animals. But no way would I give all but 2% away. Like FB said, why did they even play the lottery if they had no use for the winnings? That’s silly!

    I’d pay off our debt first. Pay off my grandparents’ and parents’ debt. Then I’d put the rest away and live off the interest. ;) I don’t think I could ever just sit at home all day. I’d still have a job. But knowing we had $11 million sitting in the bank would be enough security for us for sure!

  • I don’t know if I would give away that much, but I could see myself donating a bit of the winnings. If you consider that many lottery winners end up losing it all anyway, I think this couple may have the right idea altogether.

    One thing is for sure though. I don’t think I would pay off family members’ debts since I think such a move rewards bad behavior. Neither do I think that such a move would change behavior enough to have a lasting positive effect.

    • Penny

      @Ctreit: When I think about paying off family members’ debts, I think about mortgages and car loans that they’ve RESPONSIBLY taken out. Not ‘bad’ debt such as consumer debt, etc.

  • [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Penny and Rainy-Day Saver, Penny. Penny said: Would You Give Away $11.3 Million? http://bit.ly/d0c4de [...]

  • I can’t imagine giving away that much money. It’s sad part of their motivation was to stop people from hounding them.

    I’ll never have this problem since I don’t buy tickets.

    • Penny

      @Kay Lynn: I *almost* never buy lottery tickets. Once in a while, if the Mega Millions gets up around $200, I might get $5 worth of tickets for a laugh. It’s gambling, and I’m not big on that.

  • Like Kay, I was sorry to find out that part of their motivation was to keep manipulators and scam artists out of their lives. It’s sad they felt they had to give away their fortune to avoid that type of harassment and scrutiny.

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