Fab fifty hop on bus to join in Lotto celebrations
HE is the boy with the Midas touch but the excitement of picking up a cheque for almost €7.5m was just too much for little Dylan.
The youngster's parents, Michelle Ryan and Tommy Joyce, were instead joined by around 50 friends and family as they arrived at National Lottery headquarters in Dublin on a bus yesterday to collect Michelle's winnings. The couple had spent around €95 on tickets for Saturday's draw.
While other children are a steady drain on their parents' finances, seven-year-old Dylan actually boosted his mum's bank balance by a whopping €7,457,357 after he picked the winning numbers in last Saturday's bumper draw.
"He's very, very excited, he's over the moon. Of course, he has a shopping list started already. He'd love to buy a farm," said Michelle yesterday as she sipped champagne.
As for herself, Michelle (30) isn't about to lose her head now she's a multi-millionaire.
"At the moment I'd probably buy a new car and a holiday, then I'll see what I want to do."
However, Tommy (64) already has his eye on something more flash. "I'm going to buy two racehorses," he declared.
"It was our son Dylan who picked the numbers for us a couple of months ago and we stuck with them all along," added Tommy.
The couple, from Athlone, Co Westmeath, met 11 years ago when Michelle worked as an assistant in one of Tommy's shops. In the past few months Tommy has suffered from ill-health and was told his leg might have to be amputated after he contracted the life-threatening infection septicemia.
"I was in intensive care for two weeks last September and they said I was going to die and they sent for all my relatives. I was given 48 hours to live . . . My little lad Dylan was there and they lifted him up on the bed for a last kiss," he explained.
Fortunately he has since improved and should be out of his wheelchair in the coming months. Until two weeks ago, Tommy was in receipt of €180 a week in disability benefits.
He admitted the extent of their newfound wealth still hadn't sunk in yet.
"Michelle checked the numbers on the television, four, five, six numbers and she was jumping up and down.
"We drank 14 bottles of champagne in the house that night," he added.
Michelle's win might be massive by anyone's count, but the largest Lotto win remains the €18m jackpot won by the Dan Morrissey syndicate in Carlow in June 2008.