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Man With Terminal Cancer Dies Three Weeks After Winning $1M Lottery

Man With Terminal Cancer Dies Three Weeks After Winning $1M Lottery

Donald Savastano was excited to buy a truck and plan for his retirement when he won the $1m jackpot...

Stewart Perrie

Stewart Perrie

When people win the lottery, a whole new world opens up and they're finally able to afford the things they've desperately wanted to own. While these lucky people might be nagged by family or friends for a few quid here and there, they are granted an opportunity to get something they might have never been able to purchase.

Donald Savastano won $1 million on the Merry Millions lottery in December last year in New York. He was obviously thrilled and when asked what he would use the money for, the self-employed carpenter told KRON 4: "Probably going to go get a new truck and probably go on vacation."

He was excited to pay off some debt and prepare for the future as he hadn't really planned for retirement because of his profession.

The thing he didn't tell reporters was that he would also take himself to the doctor - something he couldn't afford previously because he wasn't insured.


Danielle Scott, the attendant scanned Donald's winning lotter ticket told ABC 7: "He was self-employed. He didn't have insurance. He hadn't been feeling good for a while, I guess, and when he got the money he went in to the doctor."

Unfortunately for the 51-year-old the physician explained he had stage four cancer in the brain and lungs.

A little more than three weeks after having his world changed with his lottery ticket, Donald died.

An obituary on Dignity Memorial reads: "He had become a carpenter after working with and learning from his dad as a kid. Don did work for commercial companies but after moving to Sidney and a short time with the union he became a successful self-employed carpenter.


"He was known for his high-quality [carpentry] work and perfectionism. He always tried to reach out and help those he could by teaching them 'the right way to do things'.

"A special thank you to those at Bassett Hospital and Tri-Town ER for the wonderful, honest and genuine care Don received. Also, thank you to hospice so he could spend his last days in the comfort of his home with those he loved."

Donald leaves behind his girlfriend of 12 years, Julie Wheeler, his mum Annette Savastano Dart, four brothers and two sisters. His funeral was held yesterday.

According to Newsday, Savastano didn't receive the full million dollars because of 'required withholdings' and instead was given a cheque worth $661,800.

Rest in peace.

Sources: KRON 4, ABC 7, Dignity Memorial, Newsday

Featured Image Credit: KRON 4

Topics: Feels, New York, Community, Cancer, Lottery