PORT JERVIS, N.Y. — A $1 Sweet Million ticket paid off big for a Port Jervis, New York, father of two who won a $1 million jackpot.
Chris Johnston, 49, and his family were presented with the token giant check Thursday by the New York Lottery's Gretchen Dizer. He said he's going to use a majority of his $660,300 lump sum payment for retirement but will treat his family and himself first.
"As far as the future, I see a beach and warm weather," Johnston said.
Johnston used a combination of birthdays from his wife, Victoria, daughter Samantha and son Seth when he picked his numbers for the Sweet Million lottery game Nov. 4.
"I started to shake a little bit, sweat a little bit, and then I probably started smiling a whole bunch," Johnston said.
Johnston works as a baker at the Price Chopper in Matamoras, Pa., and as a real estate broker at Hawk's Nest Realty in Port Jervis. He said for some people, he's become a good- luck charm.
"People ask me, 'Can you rub my hand?'" said Johnston.
Victoria Johnston said she didn't believe her husband at first when he told her, but even as the reality sinks in, not much will change in their household.
"Nothing's changed — we're both working people," she said.
Johnston purchased his lucky ticket for just $1, according to store clerk Peter Patel of the Port Jervis Market on East Main Street. The market is the region's top lottery seller and according to Patel sells more than 90 types of lottery games. Patel said Johnston, who was a regular lottery customer, was one of 33 people who bought that same game that day.
Odds of winning the top prize are 1 in 3,838,380, according to the New York Lottery website.
Right before the presentation, Judy Ennis of the Town of Deerpark came in to buy a lottery ticket.
"I think it's great — wonderful. It's nice to see someone local," Ennis said.
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