After working as a preschool teacher in Charlotte, North Carolina, for two decades, Joe Camp was laid off in September amid the coronavirus pandemic. A month later, he lost his father.
"It put me in a dark place," said Camp in a news release from NC Lottery. "But I have a lot of friends and family that just told me to keep sticking in there, keep believing in myself."
But just when he thought life couldn't get any worse, Camp won the lottery.
"Thursday morning, I went to the store and bought a scratch-off ticket like I usually do," Camp said. "And I bought two tickets. I didn't win on the first one, so I tried the second and I scratched it off, and I fell to my knees at the gas pump."
Camp, who is a father and grandfather, won a $250,000 Gold Rush ticket, which he says he plans to use on his family. He says he wants to save for his daughter's education and buy a new home he plans to pass down to his loved ones.
"What I plan on doing with my winnings is having a future for my daughter," he said. "I want to have something for us. I never had anything. No one passed anything down, and that's what I want to do."
If you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.