Lotto winner buys ticket as wife says ‘ don’t be greedy’
Powerball millionaire Lou Te Keeti is buying another ticket for tonight’s $ 30 million Lotto draw — but he is not going to tell his wife.
Before the 70- year- old kaumatua scooped $ 10.3m in the Lotto Powerball on July 8, his wife Val used to tell him he was “wasting his money” buying a ticket every week.
“But I used to tell her, you have to be in it to win it. And I was proved right. I don’t like to rub that in with her, but let’s just say I might mention it every now and again.”
Te Keeti said Val was appalled earlier this week when he told her he was going to buy a ticket for Wednesday’s Lotto draw.
“She said, ‘ Lou, don’t be greedy, we have had our turn, you give someone else a chance’.
“And she told me ‘ Don’t be stupid either, it is not like you are going to win again’.”
Te Keeti, 70, says life is still “hectic” after the win. He has spent about $ 2m of his winnings and lost around 10kg in weight since the win.
He and the whanau — he has four children and seven mokopuna — have not splashed out.
“I’ve sorted out the kids and the grandkids so they will always be comfortable, but the kids are sensible. I spoke to my son in Australia this week, he is still working hard and that makes me proud. I don’t think they will use the money for frivolous things — with the grandkids I am trying to get them to learn how to use it wisely to make money, and focus on philanthropy.”
He i s still in his old gumboots, but he has splashed out recently on a new car, buying the latest sporty Suzuki Swift a few weeks ago.
On a whim he also purchased a car for Val, a red latest- model Ford Focus, but she was not impressed.
“It sat in the driveway for t wo weeks. I said ‘ Aren’t you going to drive your car?’. She would sit in it but not even turn the engine on, and would go off in her old manual car.
“Eventually she told me she didn’t like it — it had too many bells and whistles that she didn’t want to bother with. She likes to turn things on manually she says, not press a screen.”
Te Keeti took the car back, and traded it in for a gold Swift.
“But then still she made me go and get a warrant on her old manual. Luckily it passed. So she is still driving that.”
He has also purchased two more mares to breed racehorses, a passion which he says he and Val share. The couple now own five mares, two of which are at Cambridge stud farms “looking for suitors”.
“They even gave me a new cap at the stud farm.”
The couple will soon move from their home ready for renovations to take place.
“When it i s done I think that i s where Val will enjoy doing the interiors of the home. But she will still want all our history, all her ornaments and photos.”
The road to the urupa ( cemetery) i s almost complete, and Te Keeti will continue looking after Wairoa Marae where he i s kaitiaki ( guardian).
With the whanau and hapu looked after, and money given to charities — Te Keeti gave $ 300,000 to three local charities soon after his win — he said he was turning his focus to planning ahead.
“I sat down the other day and said to Val that I only have five to 10 years left so we need to plan how we are going to spend it.”
She told me not to be silly and that she wasn’t going to spend the next five years living any differently than the last 50 years.
The couple celebrate their fiftieth wedding anniversary next year.
I’ve sorted out the kids and the grandkids so they will always be comfortable, but the kids are sensible. Lou Te Keeti, Powerball winner