'Bad omen' 13 proves lucky charm for £1m winner
The number 13 became a super-lucky omen in more ways than one for a WestCountry couple who began the year by scooping £1 million in the Euromillions Millionaire Raffle prize.
Roger Whitehouse and his wife, Kath, from Minehead, had a frightening end to 2012 when Mr Whitehouse suffered a suspected heart attack.
Doctors diagnosed Mr Whitehouse, 67, with an angina attack, but due to previous heart problems kept him in hospital until New Year's Day. Mr Whitehouse, a retired British Gas engineer said: "I was in bed number 13 on the ward in hospital and was let out on the first day of 2013, which wouldn't usually be lucky.
"I was staying with my son in Swindon at the time and on the way home I asked him where I could buy a lottery ticket locally as I knew it was a big New Year draw."
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The following day Mr Whitehouse realised he had become a millionaire when he and his wife went shopping and picked up a print-out of the winning draw and raffle numbers.
Yesterday as the couple were presented with a jumbo-sized cheque and celebratory champagne in the historic setting of St Audries Park Hotel, West Quantoxhead, Mr Whitehouse admitted that the shock of winning could have been a shock to his heart.
But he added: "I've got a very good family and they told me to calm down."
The couple, who have two children, five grandchildren aged 14-25 and three great-grandchildren, plan to move from their one-bedroom flat to a new two-bedroom bungalow with a garden. They will upgrade their Ford Focus to a newer model, but have no plans for a hugely expensive lifestyle.
And they have no plans to leave Minehead where they moved a year ago from Cornwall to be nearer family in Swindon.