Joe Camp recently lost his father and, even more recently, his job.
Up until September, Joe taught at a local pre school for nearly 20 years. He then took a job at a car dealership.
On the morning of Christmas Eve, Joe found good fortune — in the form of a winning $250,000 lottery ticket.
The Charlotte, North Carolina, resident headed to a gas station to buy a lottery ticket that morning, per his normal routine. However, he ended up winning $250,000 on the Gold Rush ticket he bought that day.
“Thursday morning, I went to the store and bought a scratch-off ticket like I usually do,” Camp said in a press release from NC Lottery. “And I bought two tickets. I didn’t win on the first one, so I tried the second and I scratched it off, and I fell to my knees at the gas pump.”
Camp had spent 20 years as a preschool teacher, but was laid off in September and had to find work at a car dealership instead. He told the NC Lottery, despite his recent hardships, that his friends and family kept him strong.
“I just recently got employed at a car dealership auto sales center,” he said. “I was a teacher for 20 years, a preschool teacher, and I got laid off on September 6. A month after that, my dad passed away. And it put me in a dark place. But I have a lot of friends and family that just told me to keep sticking in there, keep believing in myself.”
As a father and grandfather, Camp added that he’s planning on putting his winnings aside for his family, including securing a new home and saving for his daughter’s education.
“What I plan on doing with my winnings is having a future for my daughter,” he said.
“I want to get a home because I want to set it up for my family, my grandkids,” Camp added. “I want to have something for us. I never had anything, no one passed anything down, and that’s what I want to do.”
Excuse us while we run out and buy a lottery ticket.