A Raynham, Massachusetts, woman was stuck and killed by an SUV earlier this week, just moments after winning a $100 lottery prize.
Alice Costa carried a book of prayers in her head — some for the sick, others for luck. She had one for just about every occasion.
Without fail, the 74-year-old Raynham woman put the welfare of others before her own, family members said yesterday. But her guilty pleasure, which family members said she indulged almost every day, was playing the lottery.
Tuesday evening, as she had done dozens of times before, Costa walked to the convenience store across North Main Street from her home and bought a lottery scratch ticket. It turned out to be a winner, which she cashed for $100.
Costa headed home, excited to tell her nephew, who was staying with her, about her prize. But as she crossed the street again, Costa was struck by the driver of a sport-utility vehicle, police and family members said.
Costa died late Tuesday night at Brigham and Women's Hospital.
Yesterday, family members described Costa as a simple and devoutly Catholic woman. She always carried a rosary and prayed often for friends and loved ones in need, they said.
The matriarch of a large family, all with roots in Raynham, Costa helped raise nine brothers, three sisters, and dozens of nieces and nephews. She was always reluctant to accept credit for her good deeds.
"She was very soft-spoken, very bashful. She was always giving," said her niece, Cindy Bickford.
Costa never married, Bickford said, but spent her days caring for everyone and everything around her. No fewer than 28 stray cats frequented her backyard, where she fed them daily.
Every year at Thanksgiving she delivered food to nuns in Taunton, Bickford said.
Costa had prepared a meal of pastries, vegetables, turkey, and dessert this year, which her nephew delivered after she died.
"She was just an amazing woman," Bickford said. "She took care of everyone."
The driver of the sport-utility vehicle that struck Costa was not cited, police said. Poor visibility on the street might have been a factor in the accident, police said.