Welcome Guest
Log In | Register )
The time is now 9:41 am
You last visited July 25, 2014, 9:39 am
All times shown are
Eastern Time (GMT-5:00)

Penn. woman wins lottery prize of $1,000 a week for life

Pennsylvania LotteryPennsylvania Lottery: Penn. woman wins lottery prize of $1,000 a week for life

Millions of people play the lottery. Some may have a lucky strike and win a couple dollars, or even a couple hundred dollars. But just a handful of scratch-off gamers hit that big prize, and Nancy Guiher can include herself among them.

Guiher was recently the winner of the $1,000 a week for life game sponsored by the Pennsylvania Lottery.

She is only the 74th person to win this prize since its inception in July 1995.

Last Friday, a check presentation ceremony was held for Guiher at the Saltsburg Shop 'n Save, where she purchased the winning ticket.

Representatives from the Pennsylvania Lottery were there, and Shop 'n Save employees surprised Guiher with a congratulatory cake. Guiher was accompanied by her family: husband Denny, daughters Becky Pizer and Kathy Muir, son-in-law Scott Muir and her four grandchildren.

"This, to me, it's unreal," Guiher remarked. "I didn't really believe it until I saw the check."

According to Donna Spallone, manager of the Saltsburg Shop 'n Save, the prize Guiher won was the largest to ever come out of the store.

"We had someone win $100,000 two or three years ago," she said.

It was around Halloween time, she recalled, because the prize was won on a Halloween scratch-off.

The Shop 'n Save store will also receive a $5,000 bonus for selling the winning ticket.

Spallone said she's not sure what plans owner Gary Wheatley has for the bonus, but she thinks the store employees might have an especially nice Christmas party this year.

"He usually springs for one, but maybe this year's will be a little extra special," she said.

According to the Pennsylvania Lottery, a person's odds of winning the Win for Life top prize is 1 in 4.8 million. The overall odds of winning any prize on that scratch-off are 1 in 4.7.

"I've been playing this game since its inception," in 1995, Guiher said. "I've played the lottery ever since it started," 33 years ago. A friend, Janice Thomas, who she's known since high school, introduced her to the inexpensive instant game.

It was early in the morning on Oct. 23 that Guiher came to the Saltsburg Shop 'n Save to do her grocery shopping.

On her way out the store, she stopped at the automatic lottery ticket machine that sits at the front. "I almost didn't play it," she said. "And I was going to play the Ruby Reds."

Guiher said she plays every day, except when she's on vacation, "sometimes one ticket, sometimes five," she said.

She added that she mostly plays her winnings, meaning if she wins money on a ticket, she uses those winnings to purchase more tickets.

Guiher had cashed in $40 worth of ticket winnings that morning, though, and used it to buy her groceries. She used her change to purchase lottery tickets from the machine on her way out the door.

She went home and sat down on the couch to scratch off her ticket while her husband, Denny, sat at the computer. The ticket, she explained, has four different games on it. She scratched off the first game--nothing. On the second game, she uncovered three keystone symbols, meaning she would win the prize shown under a section she hadn't yet scratched off. She waited, uncovering the bottom two games, then went back up to Game No. 2 to scratch off the prize.

It said, "Life" and underneath, in small letters, "$1,000 a week."

"I jumped up and yelled, 'Oh, my God, I just retired!'" Guiher recalled. "My husband said, 'Yeah, right. What, did you win $1,000?' 'No,' I said, '$1,000 a week for life!'"

Guiher then called down to the store to validate the ticket, "Because I had never seen one before," she said. "And they verified that it was."

"I was just ecstatic," she remarked. "My husband thought I was going to have a heart attack.

"I can't even begin to describe the feeling. You can sit and say how you react, how you'd feel, but until ithappens, you never really know."

In a small town like Saltsburg, good news travels fast.

"All of Saltsburg knew 20 minutes after is happened," Guiher laughed. "Probably within two hours, the whole town knew. It's a small town. You can't keep a secret."

Guiher's four grandchildren--Bobby, 9, Carrie, 7, Hannah, 2, and Michael, 1--may have a jollier holiday this year because of Grandma's winnings, at least, "They seem to think so," she laughed.

She plans to invest the bulk of the money, but said she may splurge for a Hawaiian vacation.

"I'm just going to retire a little sooner than I planned," Guiher said. She had considered retirement in about five years, but now, she thinks it might be more like a year and a half.

Guiher will receive a check for $52,000 every year for 20 years, minus 25 percent federal withholding.

As of Nov. 21, two top prizes remain in the current Win for Life instant game.

Spallone said she hasn't observed a large increase in lottery ticket purchases since Guiher's win, but several buyers joked with store employees, saying, "Give me one of the tickets you gave to Nancy," Spallone said.

Right now, the Christmas instant games are selling well, she added.

Guiher will "absolutely" continue to play, she said, "every day, as long as I can."

And anyone lottery player who thinks that the big jackpot is never within reach, needs only to look to Guiher as an example that it really can happen to anybody.

Said Guiher, "I wish anybody who plays the lottery the best of luck."

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

We'd love to see your comments here!  Register for a FREE membership — it takes just a few moments — and you'll be able to post comments here and on any of our forums. If you're already a member, you can Log In to post a comment.

11 comments. Last comment 9 years ago by Iesha Kelly.
Page 1 of 1
sirbrad's avatar - Lottery-062.jpg
PA
United States
Member #22983
October 6, 2005
2010 Posts
Offline
Posted: December 9, 2005, 7:59 am - IP Logged

Wow finally another lucky for life winner! I bet cash only will love this. I gave up on that game long ago as I hate scratch offs, and the paybacks, if there ever was any, were bad. I might have to grab a few thought sometime. But with only two winners out there I don't know if it is worth it.

    sirbrad's avatar - Lottery-062.jpg
    PA
    United States
    Member #22983
    October 6, 2005
    2010 Posts
    Offline
    Posted: December 9, 2005, 8:21 am - IP Logged

    MIDDLETOWN -- Nancy Guiher, a 58-year-old secretary from Saltsburg, Indiana County, has won $1,000-a-week-for-life, the top prize in the WIN FOR LIFE instant game, from the Pennsylvania Lottery.

    Lottery Area Manager Dennis Nero presented Guiher with her first annual payment of $52,000, less federal withholding, during a news conference today at ShopNSave, 543 Salt St., where Guiher purchased the winning instant ticket. ShopNSave, owned by Gary Wheatley and managed by Donna Spallone, received a $5,000 bonus for selling the winning ticket.

    Guiher, who has worked as the secretary for Saltsburg Middle/High School for 36 years, was planning to retire within the next few years. Now, Guiher says the extra annual income from the Lottery prize may allow her and her husband, Dennis, to retire earlier than expected.

    We have to get our ducks in a row first and then we can retire, said Guiher, who wants to invest most of her winnings, although she said they plan to splurge on a trip to Hawaii

      Avatar

      United States
      Member #6676
      September 3, 2004
      95 Posts
      Offline
      Posted: December 9, 2005, 10:20 am - IP Logged

      "Guiher, who has worked as the secretary for Saltsburg Middle/High School for 36 years, was planning to retire within the next few years. Now, Guiher says the extra annual income from the Lottery prize may allow her and her husband, Dennis, to retire earlier than expected.

      We have to get our ducks in a row first and then we can retire, said Guiher, who wants to invest most of her winnings, although she said they plan to splurge on a trip to Hawaii"

       

      that is always good to hear!! Congrats  Noel

      --winner2b

        Raven62's avatar - binary
        New Jersey
        United States
        Member #17843
        June 28, 2005
        17937 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: December 9, 2005, 10:43 am - IP Logged

        A Million Dollar Win ($1,040,000)!

        Old enough to retire and still young enough to enjoy it!

         

          Avatar
          Sparta, NJ
          United States
          Member #18331
          July 9, 2005
          1977 Posts
          Offline
          Posted: December 9, 2005, 12:46 pm - IP Logged

          A ton more than Social Security will provide.  Good for her!

          Cheers

          |||::> *'`*:-.,_,.-:*''*:--->>> Chewie  <<<---.*''*:-.,_,.-:*''* <:::|||

          I only trust myself - and that's a questionable choice

            Avatar

            United States
            Member #27625
            December 4, 2005
            88 Posts
            Offline
            Posted: December 10, 2005, 8:44 pm - IP Logged

            A thousand a week for life is enough to keep you going, but not enough to destroy your sensibilites. Plus the parasites around the winner can't suck the winner's blood...who said "less is more"?  Socrates?  ( from the Greek diner)

              Avatar

              United States
              Member #27625
              December 4, 2005
              88 Posts
              Offline
              Posted: December 11, 2005, 6:29 am - IP Logged

              Question: How is the $1,000.00 a week paid? $4,000.00 a month for life gives the winner $48k a year vs. $1,000.00 a week for 52 weeks which totals $52,000.00 a year. Does anyone know the facts? I  have to check the PA Lottery website.

              Remember: "A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush".

                Avatar

                United States
                Member #27625
                December 4, 2005
                88 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: December 11, 2005, 6:35 am - IP Logged

                OK...I answered my own question by reading the whole article...she gets a $52,000.00 check once a year for twenty years. (It pays to actually read the whole article.) PA is up and up...good. I have to get some Powerball Tickets, nobody hit Saturday night. 

                  Avatar

                  United States
                  Member #972
                  December 30, 2002
                  461 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: December 12, 2005, 2:19 pm - IP Logged

                  $52,000 a year is just the right amount to win. If you want to quit your job you have to live sensibly; if you want to save or spend a lot of money you have to keep working. 

                   

                   

                    Avatar
                    New Member
                    sapulpa,oklahoma
                    United States
                    Member #28236
                    December 12, 2005
                    13 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: December 13, 2005, 10:43 am - IP Logged

                    go girl,congratsCheers

                     

                      Avatar

                      United States
                      Member #24503
                      October 23, 2005
                      159 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: December 13, 2005, 1:09 pm - IP Logged

                      good for her.  and i agree about the amount.