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Mass. lottery winner dies in house fire

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A New Bedford, Massachusetts, man who lived a modest life even after winning a $5 million lottery jackpot has died in a fire.

Authorities say 85-year-old John Gonsalves Sr. died Thursday after being overcome by smoke in his home. The fire was determined to be accidental, most likely caused by smoking materials.

Gonsalves won a $5.1 million Megabucks jackpot in 1994, yet he didn't let the fortune change his life.

His son, John Junior, says his father enjoyed the freedom the money gave him, and liked to buy nice clothes and jewelry, yet he wasn't frivolous and remained the same humble person.

The elder Gonsalves is still owed more than $1 million of his winnings. His son says he hopes the money doesn't cause friction between his father's survivors, including two ex-wives and five other children.

AP

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33 comments. Last comment 9 years ago by rubberbandman.
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chippie's avatar - Lottery-064.jpg

Bahamas
Member #31284
January 27, 2006
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Posted: March 25, 2008, 9:41 am - IP Logged

I wonder at times if winning the lottery isnt a curse.Disapprove

    KyMystikal's avatar - 1457224010054
    Florence, Alabama
    United States
    Member #8658
    November 13, 2004
    1993 Posts
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    Posted: March 25, 2008, 10:33 am - IP Logged

    I wonder at times if winning the lottery isnt a curse.Disapprove

    I don't think winning the lottery is a curse. Everyone has a hardship sometime in their life. It's just when you win big everyone knows about it because it is so publicized. It's the about the same as celebrities getting all the news coverage on tv stations and newspapers for getting a DUI when thousands of people a day get them.

    I love doubles and remember, it's just a game!!!!!!

      rubberbandman's avatar - Spawn Classic.jpg
      mn
      United States
      Member #59040
      March 4, 2008
      276 Posts
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      Posted: March 25, 2008, 11:41 am - IP Logged

      You guys do know he's old right. He was 85, dont get to worked up about it, sad to say or maybe not but he LIVED his LIFE. How old do you want people to be when they die, i dont know about you but 85 sounds like a good number to me and that's only if I can't still function on my own, if i can function then obviously i want to live longer . Anyways who wants to live to be 100+, that sounds ridiculous, if you can function then that's cool but most cannot, you lose control of your body around the 70's period or even younger. This nation isn't health conscious so you are in for quite a ride if you still live in the us and that old.

        justxploring's avatar - villiarna
        Wandering Aimlessly
        United States
        Member #25360
        November 5, 2005
        4461 Posts
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        Posted: March 25, 2008, 12:33 pm - IP Logged

        You guys do know he's old right. He was 85, dont get to worked up about it, sad to say or maybe not but he LIVED his LIFE. How old do you want people to be when they die, i dont know about you but 85 sounds like a good number to me and that's only if I can't still function on my own, if i can function then obviously i want to live longer . Anyways who wants to live to be 100+, that sounds ridiculous, if you can function then that's cool but most cannot, you lose control of your body around the 70's period or even younger. This nation isn't health conscious so you are in for quite a ride if you still live in the us and that old.

        I can't believe what I just read here.  Yes, this man had a long life and was able to enjoy his last few years in comfort, but it isn't up to you to judge at what age a person should die.  I can't even describe my reaction to this post.  I hope you don't get into an accident and, while there's still lots of hope, your family is standing around saying "well, let's pull the plug because he's already done enough, so we don't need him any more."   

        "..you lose control of your body around the 70s period.."

        How many people 70 or 80 do you know? There is no mention of his health.  He died in a fire. 


          United States
          Member #58528
          February 18, 2008
          710 Posts
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          Posted: March 25, 2008, 1:20 pm - IP Logged

          "The elder Gonsalves is still owed more than $1 million of his winnings."

           

          Just goes to show why people should not take their lottery winnings in the form of an annuity.

            Raven62's avatar - binary
            New Jersey
            United States
            Member #17843
            June 28, 2005
            49813 Posts
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            Posted: March 25, 2008, 1:23 pm - IP Logged

            Winning the Lottery is Not hazardous to your Health: But Smoking is!

            Rest in Peace John G.: You did what many of us may never do: Win a Jackpot!

            A mind once stretched by a new idea never returns to its original dimensions!

              ThatScaryChick's avatar - x1MqPuM
              Idaho
              United States
              Member #56506
              November 21, 2007
              6537 Posts
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              Posted: March 25, 2008, 1:45 pm - IP Logged

              Winning the lottery isn't a curse. He died in a fire. People die everyday and even lottery winners will die one day. It's doesn't mean that winners of lottery prizes are more likely to die.

              "No one remembers the person who almost climbed the mountain, only the person who eventually gets to the top."

                MillionsWanted's avatar - 24Qa6LT

                Norway
                Member #9517
                December 10, 2004
                1272 Posts
                Online
                Posted: March 25, 2008, 2:35 pm - IP Logged

                Yes, he was old. But he didn't die naturally from old age. Who knows? He could have lived for another five years if it wasn't for that fire.

                  hearsetrax's avatar - 0118

                  United States
                  Member #52345
                  May 21, 2007
                  2659 Posts
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                  Posted: March 25, 2008, 3:18 pm - IP Logged

                  Winning the Lottery is Not hazardous to your Health: But Smoking is!

                  Rest in Peace John G.: You did what many of us may never do: Win a Jackpot!

                  I Agree! RIP  Mr. Gonsalves Sad Cheers

                    rubberbandman's avatar - Spawn Classic.jpg
                    mn
                    United States
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                    March 4, 2008
                    276 Posts
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                    Posted: March 25, 2008, 3:56 pm - IP Logged

                    I can't believe what I just read here.  Yes, this man had a long life and was able to enjoy his last few years in comfort, but it isn't up to you to judge at what age a person should die.  I can't even describe my reaction to this post.  I hope you don't get into an accident and, while there's still lots of hope, your family is standing around saying "well, let's pull the plug because he's already done enough, so we don't need him any more."   

                    "..you lose control of your body around the 70s period.."

                    How many people 70 or 80 do you know? There is no mention of his health.  He died in a fire. 

                    1st sentence) You can't believe, I seriously doubt that.

                    2nd sentence) Sorry to tell you this but it WASN'T me that killed that man, so I didn't decide what age he should die.

                    3rd sentence) Then don't describe it, honestly I don't really want to know.

                    4th sentence) Well if I lived a full life then I wouldn't mind them pulling the plug, if i'm young then maybe I deserve to die because I shouldn't be driving recklessly in the first place. Anyway I would rather die by having them pull the plug then by some sociopath torturing me to death because they want my lottery win or other assets.

                    1st question) Actually I don't know anybody that old so my conclusion was just a guess'timation.

                    5th sentence) True, but he was still old.

                    6th sentence) So, he was still old.

                    Oh, btw it is kind of hard NOT to smell carbon monoxide in your home so why didn't he leave I don't know, oh wait HE WAS OLD

                      dphillips's avatar - littleuns
                      Albuquerque, New Mexico
                      United States
                      Member #5128
                      June 18, 2004
                      377 Posts
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                      Posted: March 25, 2008, 4:48 pm - IP Logged

                      May his soul R.I.P. We all will die; it is just a matter of time. I do hope he lived his life richly -- before his winnings and after his winnings.

                      Now, to the beneficiaries he left behind. Please do not fight over his assets! 

                      See Ya!-- Bye, bye!  When you win, may you glow as brightly as theSun Smiley

                        Avatar

                        United States
                        Member #1826
                        July 11, 2003
                        2645 Posts
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                        Posted: March 25, 2008, 4:54 pm - IP Logged

                        Good thing CASHOnly doesn't post here anymore, he probably would have said something really tasteless, seeing it was Megabucks winner.

                        (insert signature here)

                          rubberbandman's avatar - Spawn Classic.jpg
                          mn
                          United States
                          Member #59040
                          March 4, 2008
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                          Posted: March 25, 2008, 5:26 pm - IP Logged

                          Good thing CASHOnly doesn't post here anymore, he probably would have said something really tasteless, seeing it was Megabucks winner.

                          Interesting,

                           

                          You only need one ticket to win. But you'll win more with one hundred.
                          Not really, it just increase your chance by 99/140000000

                            hearsetrax's avatar - 0118

                            United States
                            Member #52345
                            May 21, 2007
                            2659 Posts
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                            Posted: March 25, 2008, 5:32 pm - IP Logged

                            Good thing CASHOnly doesn't post here anymore, he probably would have said something really tasteless, seeing it was Megabucks winner.

                            LOL kinda surprised someone didn't wonder what kind of tasteless I'd leave behind LOL