Saturday 16 December 2017

'The timing is perfect' - Defence Forces syndicate march on Dublin to celebrate Lotto win

David Kearns

A group of 20 Defence Forces personnel marched on Lotto HQ to collect nearly €500,000 in winnings.

The army syndicate, based in Kilkenny, matched five numbers and the bonus to win a €452,700.

There were smiles all around as the men, aged 23-54, walked to in the National Lottery offices in Dublin this afternoon to collect their cheque.

Each of the syndicate members will take home €22,635.

“There’s a few lads getting married soon and a couple buying houses, so it could not have come at a better time,” said Private Daniel McGrath (30), from Cork.

“My wife is actually due in December with our first so the timing is beyond perfect. We actually just finished doing up the house when I got the new we’d won, so I’ve nothing to spend the money on.

“I guess it will all have to go towards spoiling the little one,” he joked.

Clive Parsons (36) said he received news of the win when he was out driving with his family after a trip to Dublin Zoo.

“I got an email from the Lotto earlier saying we’d won but I figured it was a few quid so I didn’t look at it. It was only when I got a chance to sit down and scan my emails that I saw we’d won the big one.”

Private McGrath, who has served overseas twice with the defence forces, said the close knit group of lads from Stephen’s Barracks could not be more excited with their windfall.

“It will pay for a lot of wedding cake and champagne,” said David Feehan (27), from south Kilkenny.

Private Feehan recently got engage and told Independent.ie that his bride-to-be already had plans for the money.

“It will be a big help,” he joked has he lifted up the €452,700 cheque.

“Most of my share will be going towards the wedding.”

Fellow Kilkenny man Robbie Flynn (27) quipped: “I’ve nothing in the pipeline yet but I’m sure I’ll think of something.”

The pair trained together when they first joined the Defence Forces almost ten years ago, and served with one another during a four month deployment in Chad in late 2008.

“It was some experience but we did a lot of good there. The Irish do a lot of good wherever we’re deployed,” added Private Flynn.

The €452,700 claimed by the army syndicate is the biggest prize won to date in this Lotto prize category.

This Wednesday's Lotto jackpot is a guaranteed €2 million.

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