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Christo Anton, bowler, director of Maine lottery

SCARBOROUGH, Maine -- Christo Anton, a former professional bowler who served during the 1970s as the first director of the Maine State Lottery, died at his home Tuesday at the age of 75.

A Biddeford native, Mr. Anton was the state's top candlepin bowler for three years, winning a place in Maine Sports Hall of Fame in 1995. He managed and later owned his family's business, Big 20 Bowling Center.

In 1972, Governor Kenneth Curtis named Mr. Anton the first state lottery director, with responsibility for establishing and administering the money game.

Active in education, he served for eight years on the Biddeford School Board and five on the State Board of Education, including two as chairman.

Nearly a decade ago, Mr. Anton was diagnosed with late-stage skin cancer and was given six to nine months to live. Doctors later told his family he was cancer-free.

He was active in local churches and took part in mission trips to Mexico and Haiti.

He leaves his wife, Jane, three sons, and two stepsons.

A funeral service will be held Tuesday at Royal Ridge Christian Church in Scarborough.

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