It is very likely that a Madison County, Illinois, resident is $1 million richer after purchasing a winning lottery ticket at Casey's General in Glen Carbon. However, the winner has yet to come forward to claim the massive prize.
"We're really disappointed," said Store Manager Shirley Sutter about the unknown winner having yet to seek the award. "We're anxious to see who it is."
Sutter explained that the Illinois Lottery held a summer promotion called Million Dollar Summer Raffle in which limited tickets were sold.
"They only sold 500,000 tickets and so it was $20 a ticket, and it's a raffle is what it is," Sutter said.
The drawing was held Tuesday night making four people $1 million wealthier. Five people walked away with $100,000 and 500 lottery players won $1,000.
The lottery machine inside the general store at 70 W. Main notified staff members on Wednesday morning of the win. The winning raffle ticket is number 0189067, although it's impossible to tell when the ticket was sold because they were available for purchase over a two-month span.
Another million-dollar winner was from Creve Coeur and two from the Chicago area.
The store in Glen Carbon has only had one other big winner.
"Our last large one was on July 4 and we did $1,000," said Sutter, who has only worked at the Glen Carbon location for 10 months.
"But I've been with Casey's for nine years," she said, adding that she has never had winning tickets of $1,000, let alone $1 million.
"That's why I'm so tickled pink. This is a small community and I'm really happy that it happened to the people here," she said.
It is feared that the mystery winner may have ditched the ticket unknowingly though.
"That's what the lottery guy said -- a lot of people throw their tickets out," Sutter said. "I think I would be in tears."
The owner of the winning ticket has a year from the drawing to claim his or her prize and will receive the money in a lump sum after a little less than 30 percent worth of taxes are taken out. Casey's will receive one percent.
Participants did not select the numbers, as the tickets were sold in numerical order. The odds of winning the million-dollar prize were about one in 125,000.
Sutter said she has no words of wisdom to offer the prize winner.
"No advice whatsoever. I just wish they'd come forward and let us know who they are so we can say congratulations," she said.
And what about the victor sharing his or her winnings with her?
"That wouldn't hurt! It's not necessary, but it wouldn't hurt," she said.
The secret lottery winner can claim the $1 million at the regional office for the Illinois Lottery, 15 Executive Drive Suite 1, in Fairview Heights.