GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Ralph Havis is one lucky guy. He's hit the jackpot three times. The first time, many moons ago.
"She came in and ordered a fish sandwich. The whole time she stood in line, she was smiling. She was just so beautiful, it blinded me. I got her number from someone who knew her. I must have called her 50 times and she'd hang up on me," laughed Ralph, the 73-year-old longtime owner of the "Beef Burger" on Gate City Boulevard, as he remembered the early days with his wife, Alma. "She was my whole world. We took care of each other for 53 years. I never even looked at another woman. Why would I? She blinded me."
Alma died from complications from a stroke in January.
The two used to buy scratch-off lottery tickets for fun. A few years ago, Alma won $150,000.
Monday, Ralph played the same scratch-off game, at the same location and won $150,000.
"I was like, 'Good God almighty.' Alma was my first thought. Always is. I know it was Alma and God shining down on me, I know it was," Ralph said with a tremble in his voice. "I'll be OK, but I'd give it all back with interest if I could have my Alma back."