By Sara Bondell - February 05, 2021
With only 7,500 tickets for health care workers around the country up for grabs, many weren’t getting their hopes up that they would be one of the lucky ones to get a ticket to Super Bowl LV. So, what are the odds that both husband and wife would get to go?
At Moffitt Cancer Center, three married couples snagged tickets to the big game and are getting ready for the date night of a lifetime.
Dr. Daniel Anaya and Dr. Pilar Suz
While the rest of his colleagues were buzzing about who got a Super Bowl ticket, Dr. Daniel Anaya, surgical oncologist and head of Moffitt’s Hepatobiliary Program, didn’t even bother checking his email. “I never win anything,” he said.
But his luck had changed. When Anaya checked his email at the end of the day, he discovered he was one of the health care workers gifted with a ticket. When he got home, he gathered his wife and their twin eight-year-olds together to tell them the good news.
“We were all screaming and jumping around and then he said, ‘Pilar, why don’t you look and see if you got one, too,’” said Dr. Pilar Suz, an anesthesiologist. It was Suz’s birthday, and her family was hoping they would beat the odds to give her the best birthday gift ever.
As luck would have it, Suz also had a ticket in her inbox. “Best birthday ever,” said Suz.
This is the first Bucs game for the couple, and they immediately went online and ordered Bucs jerseys.
“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to go to a Super Bowl,” said Anaya. “And to be going in Tampa with the Bucs as the home team, it’s really once in a lifetime from every standpoint. Especially when the Bucs win.”
Also once in a lifetime? A planned date night and babysitter secured well in advance.
Harrison and Christina Bachmeier
Harrison and Christina Bachmeier are expecting their first child in June, and they already have a great story to tell their son when he’s older: Mom and Dad went to the Super Bowl.
The Bachmeiers, both inpatient pharmacists, have only lived in Tampa for 2 ½ years, but that hasn’t stopped them from becoming big Bucs fans.
When Christina found out she got a ticket, she immediately called Harrison’s work extension. “I was skeptical,” she said. “I thought what are the odds we both got tickets and I didn’t want to feel excited because I am going to feel bad if he didn’t get one.”
Christina didn’t have to worry about that; Harrison was also lucky enough to get a ticket. Even though the couple already has some Bucs gear, they went out to get NFC Champion shirts to wear to the game.
“It’s almost like it’s not real,” said Harrison. “With only 7,500 health care tickets it feels like winning the lottery to be able to go.”
It’s a pretty sweet lottery; the big game with not only each other, but other Moffitt coworkers—the perfect setting for baby’s first Bucs game.
Dr. Fred and Kelly Locke
When he was a six-year-old boy in Detroit, Dr. Fred Locke, a medical oncologist and co-leader of Moffitt’s Immuno-Oncology Program, won a contest that landed him on the field for a Detroit Lions game.
A few decades later, Locke’s football luck still hasn’t run out. Not only did he snag tickets to Super Bowl LV, but his wife Kelly, a nurse on the Blood and Marrow Transplant floor, did as well.
“We didn’t think we would both get tickets,” said Fred. “We thought maybe one or the other.”
“I was just surprised,” said Kelly. “I didn’t think that either one of us would get a ticket, and when I found out one of us did I thought that is certainly lucky. So, I am excited and happy for this once in a lifetime experience.”
Fred’s 13-year-old daughter was just as excited. Even though she’s not a huge football fan, she volunteered to help watch the couple’s younger children so Fred and Kelly can enjoy the game.
“Date nights are few and far between with many children and then with COVID,” said Kelly. “We obviously haven’t been out much so getting the change to go, and to go together, is such a nice surprise.”