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‘The closest we’ll get to Sam’ – Mayo syndicate of retirees rejoice at €1m Lotto win

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A syndicate of 47 retirees from Co Mayo have painted the town red and green as they arrived at the National Lottery headquarters in Dublin today to collect their €1m prize.

he ‘Young At Heart’ group from Parke, just outside Castlebar, landed the €1m Daily Million prize in early October and were still brimming with excitement as they collected their check this afternoon.

The syndicate was formed in 2015 and couldn’t believe their luck when they became €1m richer last month.

Arriving at the National Lottery offices, Breda O’Boyle (82) was dancing and singing as she declared: “This is the closest we’ll get to Sam. It’s not a bad replacement.”

Breda said she found out about the big win while on an early-morning walk through the bog and admitted it “brought on the sweats”.

“I was out on the bog for my walk and got a phone call to say that I was at least €20,000 richer. I thought it was a joke. I said nothing and walked around the bog – I was definitely sweating, I can tell you. It was confirmed the next day and we’ve been dancing since.”

She said she has no real plans for the money but has received a few texts from her children, joking: “I’m your favorite son” and “I bring in the turf for you every day”.

A cruise, a trip to Greenland and a holiday of a lifetime are just some of the things members of the syndicate hope to do with their winnings. Meanwhile Teresa Flanagan (86) said she will get “a new pair of boots and a watch”.

Michael Cosgrave, spokesperson for the syndicate, described the utter shock he felt after finding out the group had won.

“We’re so happy to be sharing this prize with each other rather than one individual winning it on their own. It means so much more to us as a group to experience this joy together,” he said.

The winning ticket was sold in Turlough Stores, in Turlough on October 3.

Syndicate member Anne Kelly revealed how the group has already had a celebration at one of their group meetings in Parke.

“We had a meeting the Thursday after we’d won and we had our own celebrations with bubbly, food and music. It was a real party, and the atmosphere was just electric. The whole community is really delighted for us,” she said .

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