Inside tragic story of dad-of-12 lottery winner who scooped £3.1million – but was hit by secret heartbreak | The Sun

THIS is the tragic story of a dad-of-12 lotto winner who scooped £3.1million but was hit by a secret heartbreak.

Bernie Finn won the whopping jackpot in November 1998, but all the money in the world couldn't ease his grief.

The beer-loving ex-trawlerman was devastated by the loss of his baby son, 10-week-old Bernard, to cot death in 1994.

This was compounded by the death of his brother George, 28, due to a drug overdose three years later.

However, his winnings did allow him to try and put all that behind him.

After bagging the lucky ticket he packed in his job as an oil refinery worker and pledged to donate heavily to a cot death charity and the baby care unit at his local hospital in Grimsby, Lincolnshire.


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His youngest child, Lizzie, spent three months on the ward after being born weighing just two pounds.

At the time, Bernie said: "I've had my fair share of bad luck in the past – but now I want to think about the future.

"I'm not going to spend, spend, spend. But I'll be doing a fair bit of drinking.

"I sup lager and there has been talk of a bender of two."

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He added that he'd enjoy a drink with best mate Brian Hewson and would be "looking after him as well".

Despite the mega prize, Bernie didn't predict a significant lifestyle change.

Even though he claimed never to have had a holiday in his life, a trip abroad wasn't on the cards, and neither was a flashy car.

He joked: "I've got a driving licence but I don't care much for driving – maybe we'll hitchhike to Butlins."

However, Bernie seemingly changed his mind in later years, as he announced plans to move his family to Queensland, Australia.

He used his lotto winnings and money made from investments in the limo business to relocate.

At the time, he explained: "What you realise is what is important and that is your family and your kids.

"My kids won’t have the upbringing I had and my mum, Primrose, will want for nothing.

"I am sure they have crime in Australia, but it is nothing like Grimsby."

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