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Laid-off Oregon man wins $1 million in lottery

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 15, 2013 at 6:57 pm •  Published: January 15, 2013

MERLIN, Ore. (AP) — Laid off since May, Riley Gunn was driving his wife and three kids to their one-room cabin when he stopped to buy corndogs — a guilty pleasure they normally don't indulge.

Gunn also got some lottery tickets, even though money was tight and he knew his wife wouldn't approve.

He felt sure he would win — and he did. His $16 investment brought a $1 million prize.

Later, when the 34-year-old Gunn learned of his good fortune, he woke his wife, Misti, to make sure he wasn't imagining it.

She jumped out of bed, saying, "'You'd better not be kidding me,'" Riley Gunn said, standing in the Lil' Pantry Market & Deli, where he bought the winning ticket. "I said, 'Does that seem like something I would do?'"

Misti Gunn, 32, said she didn't laugh, cry or scream. All she could do was sit in a chair, staring into space.

The Gunns had to borrow money from a friend to make the 200-mile drive to Oregon Lottery headquarters to pick up their check.

Sitting in the parking lot, waiting for the office to open "was the longest 10 minutes in our lives," Riley Gunn said.

Gunn bought the ticket while the family was on their way back to their cabin in the woods in Southern Oregon after he registered for computer programming classes.

He had been a project manager for a telecommunications company in Reno, Nev., when he got laid off in May. Misti Gunn had been a customer service representative for a software contractor.

When it became too expensive to live in Reno, his sister offered to let them live in a one-room cabin with a woodstove for heat outside Wolf Creek.

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