August 29, 2014

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Couple’s heat was off, but luck was with them

NORTH RIDGEVILLE — It was cold in Theresa Wygal’s Avon Belden Road house until three magic numbers changed everything Tuesday.

When Wygal and her husband, Clint, saw her lucky lottery come up on TV, they knew the first thing they would do with the $100,000 they’d won would be to turn their heat on.

JASON MILLER / CHRONICLE
Theresa and Clint Wygal of North Ridgeville pose in their home Wednesday with a check representing the $100,000 they won from the Ohio Lottery on Tuesday.

Theresa Wygal said she was shocked when the numbers were read — 5-1-9 — the same numbers she plays on a $5 Emerald 7’s ticket every day because her birthday is May 19.

“I about fell down. I thought that it just wasn’t right. Those couldn’t be my numbers,” the 48-year-old said. “I started crying.”

Theresa Wygal said she and her husband have struggled to make ends meet after his work hours at Dove Die & Stamping in Brook Park were cut.

Because they couldn’t afford to turn on the heat in their home, they used candles to keep warm, the couple said Wednesday.

The first thing they did after hitting the jackpot was to crank up the thermostat.

With an instant pay-out of $69,000, the Wygals said they will be able to replace their car, which leaks gas and breaks down. They’ll also be able to pay off some of the debt on their house, Theresa said.

A portion of the winnings will be used for a trip to Las Vegas, where the Wygals plan to renew their wedding vows.

When they were first married 19 years ago, they didn’t have a fancy wedding or a honeymoon, and Clint Wygal said now is the perfect time to fix that.

They also plan on giving about $7,000 to family, friends and co-workers, as well as a healthy tip to the cashier who sold Theresa Wygal the lottery ticket at Sunrise Marathon down the street.

“This couldn’t have come at a better time. We want to help everyone,” she said. “We kind of feel guilty — that’s why we want to give some of this away.”

Contact Jason Hawk at 653-6264 or jhawk@chroniclet.com.