A Lotto winner who scooped £2.49million has returned to work – stacking shelves at Asda.
Hard-working Nicky Cusack, 46, was battling breast cancer when she hit the jackpot in 2009 and says the thought of returning to work kept her going through her darkest days.
After finishing chemotherapy and radiotherapy she returned to her job at Asda Walmart in Swindon., Wilts., where she earns just above minimum wage at £6.30 an hour.
Nicky still buys a Lottery ticket every week from the store, where she has worked for ten years.
She said: ”I didn’t even know if I would see the next day or not, I wanted to stay normal. It is just about being who you want to be.
”Not many firms would have kept a job open like ASDA did. It is not until you have gone back and you’re working that you actually find out who your real friends are.
”Some people say ‘why is she back? There is no need for her to work’. No there isn’t, but it is the company and your friends, that is what makes a working environment.
”Every job gets to you after a while but I enjoy my job. That’s sad maybe but I just get on and do it.
”I am quite happy going to work and coming home. Going to do bits and bobs, but at the end of the day your health is important.”
Single Nicky scooped her win during a disastrous year in 2009 which got off to a terrible start when she was savaged by a pack of six dogs in January.
She had only just recovered from the attack when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in April.
Nicky had two operations to remove the cancerous growth and underwent preemptive chemotherapy and radiotherapy to ensure the tumour did not return.
Speaking of her cancer battle, she said: ”There were some very dark moments when I didn’t even think I would see tomorrow.
”Just to lie there day after day all I wanted was to be healthy. Asda were really kind to keep my job open.”
She returned to work later that year in the music and DVDs department at Asda and has worked 24 hours a week ever since.
Nicky has been careful with her winnings – her biggest expense was her £250,000 four-bedroom home in North Swindon that she bought three months after her win.
She has four children; Kelly, 23, Jade, 18, and Mark, 16, and son Adam, 22 – a soldier with the Royal Logistics Corps who returned from a six month tour of Iraq last year.
But Nicky still plays the lottery every week and says she still crosses her fingers.
She said: ”I still think about the moment I won because you think will it happen again?
”I still play. If you don’t play you’re not in it to win it. I am not short from being a millionaire now, but you spend money to make your life more comfortable.
”I haven’t wasted it, I have invested it. I have bought a mobile home in Weymouth and spent money on this house.”
Nicky has also donated money to charities with £3,000 in total to Macmillan Cancer Support, Prospect Hospice, Asda’s Tickled Pink campaign, Help for Heroes and Meningitis Trust.