Terrace Standard

Longtime marijuana advocate wins $25M

BOB ERB, left, seen here working on the Sportsplex construction in July 2007 says he
BOB ERB, left, seen here working on the Sportsplex construction in July 2007 says he'll still continue working even though he's now a $25 million lottery winner.
— image credit: FILE PHOTO

LOCAL MARIJUANA advocate Bob Erb can now boast another claim to fame: lottery winner.

Erb won $25 million of the $50 million Lotto Max drawn Nov. 2 and says it’s his first huge win after 43 years of buying tickets.

“It absolutely is [true]. And friggin’ unbelievable,” said Erb when called Nov. 9.

On his way down and back to  his dad’s funeral in Calgary, he stopped to gas up at several places including the Hazelton Chevron where he believes he bought the ticket.

He heard that one winner was in north central B.C. and thought it may be his ticket, he said.

It was an $11 ticket and he always buys a quick pick and an extra and he gets two draws for two weeks in a row, he said.

“In Hazelton, I got my mini dips as well. I take two consecutive draws and the extra on Lotto Max,” he said.

The price was $11 and the ticket wasn’t what he asked for, but he decided to keep it.

“He (cashier) was going to delete that one. I said ‘I might as well take it, it might be the one,’” said Erb.

Erb plans to give away money to the Hazelton Chevron where he thinks he bought his ticket and to Terrace soup kitchens, homeless shelters and others.

Erb, who ran for the BC Marijuana Party here in 2001 and for city council in that year’s municipal election, says the party will also get some money.

A lot of times community groups can get money that's matched by other government agencies, he says he might match the money they get.

It's too early to speculate,” he said.

I'll be looking at community groups and that, dealing with people on fixed income and the homeless, food banks, soup kitchens.”

His employer at Beutle Masonry thought he'd have to hire someone to fill Erb's place but Erb, who notes he's 60, single and a seasonal construction worker, said he won't quit his job.

I need exercise. I'll still come a lot of the time and come to work and donate my salary to the soup kitchen and when you don't have to work, it's not work,” he said.

As for buying anything for himself, he says he's always in need of a new car as he's always frugal and buys older ones but he's not making any solid plans yet.

I don't foresee anything,” he says.

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