SAGINAW, Michigan — For fun, Keith Bryce and his wife, Elizabeth, play bingo on Tuesdays at a Knights of Columbus Hall, or watch movies on a mattress in the living room.
It's a long way from the craps tables, flashing lights and plush presidential suites at the swank Las Vegas hotels of their honeymoon.
Since Bryce won the Mega Millions lottery three years ago, he has clashed with family, spent close to $3 million and isn't far from the poorhouse — a place he assumed he'd never visit again.
In the first 30 days after hitting the jackpot — which brought him $3.7 million — Bryce dished out at least $1 million.
He still has some of the toys and accoutrements to show for it: A home on 5 fenced-in acres with a man-made pond out front, a quarter-mile long driveway and a garage for each of his rides — a pearl white Cadillac Escalade, blue convertible Corvette and Harley Davidson motorcycle.
Three months after winning, Bryce had almost a half-million dollars in taxes to pay.
He has stopped the $100 tips for Applebee's waitresses, drunken, late-night check writing and footing the bill for his three adult children.
Facing life as a thousand-aire at 47, Keith Bryce is back installing windows for his brothers' company, the same part-time job he worked before winning.
"When you don't have any money to begin with," his sister Kay Popp says, "I wouldn't wish (winning the lottery) on anybody."
Disagreements over money have divided the Bryce family.
Elizabeth Bryce swears her husband's 70-year-old mother, Helen Bryce, flips her off when they pass each other on the road.
"Greed's what wrecked us," Keith Bryce says.
Things weren't always that way.
Soon after cashing his $3.7 million check, Bryce gave his siblings and mother $10,000 apiece with the promise of more to come. He bought a Cadillac Escalade for his mother, Harleys for his brothers and gifts for their children.
'Everything went wrong'
Bryce and his mother exchange hellos when they pass each other at the grocery. They haven't talked since he married Elizabeth Rendon, a former bartender 20 years younger than he.
Bryce and Rendon met when she worked at Drake's Bar on Dixie Highway, where Bryce would buy shots and beer for everyone in the joint.
After their first date, they headed back to his house. Bryce asked her to make out. She never left. The couple wed at the Little White Chapel in Las Vegas two months later on Bryce's 46th birthday.
The couple made the three-day, 2,000-mile road trip from Bridgeport, bickering all the way.
"I didn't think we'd get married once we got there," Keith Bryce says.
Family members assumed the younger woman married Bryce for his money.
Soon after the marriage, Bryce quit acting like an ATM, handing out hundreds of dollars per week to relatives, he says.
"Everything went wrong," his mother, Helen Bryce, says. "I just stay out of their business."
The first time Bryce met with an attorney, the lawyer gave him some advice: Don't go into business with family. He didn't listen.
In a venture with his six brothers and sisters, Bryce bought the former Deming's Hardware, 6165 Dixie Highway, in 2006. They named the place Gene's Bridgeport Hardware in honor of their dead father.
His brothers and sisters voted him out of the business and kept the store on a $230,000 purchase agreement. They pay their brother $2,000 per month.
Kay Popp works the register, nine hours per day, five days per week. The other siblings rotate the weekend shift. A thin film of dust covers the merchandise at Gene's, evidence that sales are slow.
"It's hard right now," Popp says. "We're barely making it."
Three months ago, Keith Bryce went back to work for his brothers at KBS Builders to help pay the bills.
The brothers pay him in cash and talk about work, avoiding family matters. They had to let him return to work; he bought part of the business when he was flush with cash.
The Bryce family had Thanksgiving dinner without Keith this year. He doesn't expect to see them at Christmas, either.
"I don't know too much about what he's doing now," his mother says. "I don't even want to think about it."
Popp wishes her brother never won the Mega Millions.
"Money does strange things to people," she says. "That's what it did to Keith."
The calls have stopped, and the hectic pace of life as a millionaire has slowed enough, Bryce says, to let him enjoy life again — at times.
Bryce has multiple sclerosis, a nervous system disease that forces the body to attack itself.
At times, the muscles in his arms and legs tighten up, making it tough for him to sleep and walk. He shuffles around so stiffly, people wonder if his back gave out.
His wife's massages and long soaks in his hot tub don't do much to ease the pain.
If his condition worsens, the couple isn't sure insurance will cover the hundreds of thousands of dollars in anticipated medical expenses.
Among the first donations Bryce made after hitting the jackpot were $10,000 to help a Bridgeport High School classmate battling bone cancer and $25,000 to a pediatric cancer charity.
Now he's unsure if his winnings will last long enough to help him through lean times. The medical bills could force Elizabeth Bryce back to work and Keith Bryce to pull money out of investments he set up to guarantee his retirement.
"He don't have a whole lot left," Elizabeth Bryce says. "He was too giving to everybody else."
Since he married and joined Sheridan Road Baptist Church, Bryce stopped drinking and hanging out in bars. He plans to travel with the Rev. Lou Jurva and other parishioners on a missionary home-building trip to Hermosillo, Mexico, in February.
Jurva counseled the couple after Keith Bryce considered ending the marriage in March, citing physical and verbal abuse, court records about the start of divorce proceedings show.
"I'm a happy man," Keith Bryce says. "I got a gorgeous wife and a great stepson."
Bryce also has his eye on another jackpot. The half of the $35 million that he and former co-worker Aristeo Robelin didn't win remains unclaimed, more than three years after a vendor in Wilmington, Calif., sold the ticket, Bryce said.
He wants his lawyer to go to court and argue that he and Robelin are entitled to the money.
If that doesn't work, he still spends $10 each Tuesday and Friday on tickets. The night he bought the winner was the first time he ever played Mega Millions.
"I can do it again," he says. "I have just as good a chance as the next person."
Keith Bryce, 47 - seen here with his wife, 27-year-old Elizabeth M. Bryce - won $3 million in the Mega Millions lottery in 2005. But three years later, he says, the money's nearly all gone.