Welcome Guest
Log In | Register )
You last visited December 4, 2016, 7:21 pm
All times shown are
Eastern Time (GMT-5:00)

Lottery millionaire's life hasn't changed much

After the Big WinAfter the Big Win: Lottery millionaire's life hasn't changed much

Julie Nolan urges on the 1993 Chevrolet Cavalier toward her Kellogg, Minn., home, the speedometer needle struggling to hit 60 miles per hour. The aging car's odometer registers another mile with a click n 220,646 and counting n as she heads home from a shift at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

She bought the car with only seven miles on it. The vehicle still has a certain sentimental value, even though rust has eaten through sections of the passenger side floorboard.

"Besides, if somebody hits me, I can just leave it by the side of the road," she said, with a laugh.

Friends and family told her for years to replace the Chevy. But they became more insistent in January 2008 when Nolan won a $1 milllion prize from the Minnesota State Lottery.

Most people assume that such a prize would dramatically alter a person's life — visions of a new car, new job, new lifestyle. State lottery systems are predicated on these very hopes. But one year after collecting her big check, Nolan said her life hasn't changed too much. Many things in her life are just like her car, and why trade in something that still runs well?

Disbelief. It's the best word to describe Julie's reaction last year when she realized the numbers on her lottery ticket matched the winning digits. She discovered her good fortune on a Wednesday, but she could not get the ticket validated at the state lottery office until Friday. The time in between became a nerve-racking whirlwind as she scrambled to get time off from work while not letting on that she had likely snagged the $1 million prize.

Life seemed even more hectic right after it was confirmed. Nolan met with the media, grinning and posing for pictures while holding a giant check with her name on it. She called her bank, on the advice of lottery officials, to notify the staff that a large addition would soon join the $32 in her checking account. Shortly thereafter, the lottery wired $677,500 into the account, Nolan's take-home total after taxes immediately sliced 32.25 percent of her $1 million.

The pace slowed in the coming weeks, and she did something with her money that many people might think strange — not a whole lot.

Sure, she bought plenty of presents for her two kids, 7-year-old Nolan and 4-year-old Kendall. "I think they're spoiled a little bit," she joked.

She poured money into the house she bought at a foreclosure sale in November 2006, buying new siding, upgrading the landscaping and turning her "10-year project" into a few-month overhaul.

And she treated her family to a memorable vacation. Nolan, her children, her mom, her sister and two nieces spent a week in May at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla.

But many other aspects of her life didn't change at all.

She still drives the beat-up Cavalier. The one toy she bought was a six-passenger Polaris Ranger that she can legally drive on the streets of Kellogg.

She still commutes to the job she's held for the last 13 years. The money allowed her to enroll in online classes at Rochester Community and Technical College to work toward an associate's degree in health information technology. The degree may allow her to eventually move to another Mayo campus in a warmer climate, she said. She has her eye on Jacksonville, Fla.

Julie still shuttles her son off to wrestling practices, and she spent a recent weekend morning manning the concession stand during one of his tournaments.

And she still plays the lottery, buying a ticket now and then to see if lightning can strike twice.

"You can't win again if you don't play," she said.

Julie Nolan, right, of Kellogg, Minn., and her mother Diane Wendt, hold Nolan's cardboard check in January of 2008 after she won a million dollars in the Minnesota State Lottery.
Julie Nolan, right, of Kellogg, Minn., and her mother Diane Wendt, hold Nolan's cardboard check in January of 2008 after she won a million dollars in the Minnesota State Lottery.

Winona Daily News

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.

22 comments. Last comment 8 years ago by SmoothJuice.
Page 1 of 2

United States
Member #58528
February 18, 2008
710 Posts
Offline
Posted: February 10, 2009, 10:54 am - IP Logged

Julie Nolan urges on the 1993 Chevrolet Cavalier toward her Kellogg, Minn., home, the speedometer needle struggling to hit 60 miles per hour. The aging car's odometer registers another mile with a click n 220,646 and counting n as she heads home from a shift at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

She bought the car with only seven miles on it. The vehicle still has a certain sentimental value, even though rust has eaten through sections of the passenger side floorboard.

"Besides, if somebody hits me, I can just leave it by the side of the road," she said, with a laugh.

Friends and family told her for years to replace the Chevy. But they became more insistent in January 2008 when Nolan won a $1 milllion prize from the Minnesota State Lottery.

Most people assume that such a prize would dramatically alter a person's life — visions of a new car, new job, new lifestyle. State lottery systems are predicated on these very hopes. But one year after collecting her big check, Nolan said her life hasn't changed too much. Many things in her life are just like her car, and why trade in something that still runs well?

Disbelief. It's the best word to describe Julie's reaction last year when she realized the numbers on her lottery ticket matched the winning digits. She discovered her good fortune on a Wednesday, but she could not get the ticket validated at the state lottery office until Friday. The time in between became a nerve-racking whirlwind as she scrambled to get time off from work while not letting on that she had likely snagged the $1 million prize.

Life seemed even more hectic right after it was confirmed. Nolan met with the media, grinning and posing for pictures while holding a giant check with her name on it. She called her bank, on the advice of lottery officials, to notify the staff that a large addition would soon join the $32 in her checking account. Shortly thereafter, the lottery wired $677,500 into the account, Nolan's take-home total after taxes immediately sliced 32.25 percent of her $1 million.

The pace slowed in the coming weeks, and she did something with her money that many people might think strange — not a whole lot.

Sure, she bought plenty of presents for her two kids, 7-year-old Nolan and 4-year-old Kendall. "I think they're spoiled a little bit," she joked.

She poured money into the house she bought at a foreclosure sale in November 2006, buying new siding, upgrading the landscaping and turning her "10-year project" into a few-month overhaul.

And she treated her family to a memorable vacation. Nolan, her children, her mom, her sister and two nieces spent a week in May at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla.

But many other aspects of her life didn't change at all.

She still drives the beat-up Cavalier. The one toy she bought was a six-passenger Polaris Ranger that she can legally drive on the streets of Kellogg.

She still commutes to the job she's held for the last 13 years. The money allowed her to enroll in online classes at Rochester Community and Technical College to work toward an associate's degree in health information technology. The degree may allow her to eventually move to another Mayo campus in a warmer climate, she said. She has her eye on Jacksonville, Fla.

Julie still shuttles her son off to wrestling practices, and she spent a recent weekend morning manning the concession stand during one of his tournaments.

And she still plays the lottery, buying a ticket now and then to see if lightning can strike twice.

"You can't win again if you don't play," she said.

Julie Nolan, right, of Kellogg, Minn., and her mother Diane Wendt, hold Nolan's cardboard check in January of 2008 after she won a million dollars in the Minnesota State Lottery.
Julie Nolan, right, of Kellogg, Minn., and her mother Diane Wendt, hold Nolan's cardboard check in January of 2008 after she won a million dollars in the Minnesota State Lottery.

Sounds like she has her head on straight.But she really should replace the 16 year old car...before one of her kids falls through the floor board or they all get gassed out from carbon monoxide.

    dpoly1's avatar - driver
    PA
    United States
    Member #66141
    October 16, 2008
    1672 Posts
    Offline
    Posted: February 10, 2009, 1:28 pm - IP Logged

    Why drive a potentially dangerous car ??????????????????

    Not very smart !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Another modest car would be very wise !!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Omniscient's avatar - Lottery-017.jpg
      Florida
      United States
      Member #46570
      September 14, 2006
      558 Posts
      Offline
      Posted: February 10, 2009, 2:07 pm - IP Logged

      If she loves the car that much, she should get the damages repaired at least. Eek

       See full size image                                               

       Don't Play more, Play Smarter!

        hearsetrax's avatar - 0118

        United States
        Member #52345
        May 21, 2007
        2657 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: February 10, 2009, 3:14 pm - IP Logged

        Crazy lady ..but if I was a member of her family ...I just find the other CraigsList clunker and surprise her with it

          Uff Da!'s avatar - InCelebration 001.jpg
          Washington State
          United States
          Member #33973
          February 26, 2006
          347 Posts
          Offline
          Posted: February 10, 2009, 3:27 pm - IP Logged

          Ah, lady after my own heart!

          The amount she won wasn't all that much.  Even if I won the Mega Millions I would be in no hurry to replace my 1992 vehicle.  As I see it, a vehicle is simply a means of transportation and if it gets a person from one place to another it is doing its job.  There are much more interesting, as well as more important, things on which to spend one's money IMO. 

          To each his own.

            susie545's avatar - Lottery-034.jpg
            Lux
            United States
            Member #67800
            December 5, 2008
            156 Posts
            Offline
            Posted: February 10, 2009, 3:29 pm - IP Logged

            Smile haha she look familiar to Yellow Eyesme

            who is oprahSun Smiley

              charmed7's avatar - Lottery-013.jpg
              MICHIGAN
              United States
              Member #65282
              September 22, 2008
              1992 Posts
              Offline
              Posted: February 10, 2009, 3:44 pm - IP Logged

              The lady sound like she on the right track, I'd put it in the garage, and

              slowly restore it, that would keep me grounded, but i would buy me a

              certified use car.

                s5thomps's avatar - Lottery-033.jpg
                Hard Luck, Ak
                United States
                Member #23472
                October 13, 2005
                275 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: February 10, 2009, 6:17 pm - IP Logged

                Ah, lady after my own heart!

                The amount she won wasn't all that much.  Even if I won the Mega Millions I would be in no hurry to replace my 1992 vehicle.  As I see it, a vehicle is simply a means of transportation and if it gets a person from one place to another it is doing its job.  There are much more interesting, as well as more important, things on which to spend one's money IMO. 

                To each his own.

                I Agree!    A million dollars is not even worth a million dollars anymore and after taxes it only came up to about $670,0000. That is still alot of money but not enough money to quit your day job! If a person wanted that could go through that money in 6 months. It's a good idea just to bee frugal and get a good used car and put the rest in moderately safe investments.

                  DelmarvaChick's avatar - wallace
                  Ohio
                  United States
                  Member #68398
                  December 20, 2008
                  81 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: February 10, 2009, 7:35 pm - IP Logged

                  I would probably be a lot like this lady, keep a lot of stuff the same...just upgrade my quality of life by spending my time how I want rather than using my money to buy more stuff because people/society think I should have it.  My truck has over 450 thousand miles on it and it still keeps on going. Dealerships call me once a month to see if its still moving. I figure it's cheaper to replace parts than pay a note on a new one plus the insurance. I figure I'll replace it one day but I'd like to hit the half million mark first. People need to look at cars as more of a mode of transportation rather than a status symbol....and most cars nowadays will get a good 200K out of them no problem (if you let them)...as long as she keeps up with the maintinence, I would be more concerned about the actual age of the car rather than the mileage.  Carcus cancer sucks.

                    Avatar
                    Entertaiment Capital
                    United States
                    Member #37800
                    April 19, 2006
                    302 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: February 11, 2009, 12:26 am - IP Logged

                     Winning one million dollars won't change the life that significantly. After tax and everything, it's not much. You really can't do a lot of things with less than half a million.

                     It will be definitely life-changing if the prize is 20 or 30 millions after tax.

                      ThatScaryChick's avatar - x1MqPuM
                      Idaho
                      United States
                      Member #56506
                      November 21, 2007
                      6537 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: February 11, 2009, 12:34 am - IP Logged

                      Ah, lady after my own heart!

                      The amount she won wasn't all that much.  Even if I won the Mega Millions I would be in no hurry to replace my 1992 vehicle.  As I see it, a vehicle is simply a means of transportation and if it gets a person from one place to another it is doing its job.  There are much more interesting, as well as more important, things on which to spend one's money IMO. 

                      To each his own.

                      I Agree! One should do what they want with their money. If she doesn't feel like getting a new car at the moment or feels that her vehicle works for her needs, more power to her.

                      "No one remembers the person who almost climbed the mountain, only the person who eventually gets to the top."


                        United States
                        Member #58528
                        February 18, 2008
                        710 Posts
                        Offline
                        Posted: February 11, 2009, 1:36 am - IP Logged

                        I Agree! One should do what they want with their money. If she doesn't feel like getting a new car at the moment or feels that her vehicle works for her needs, more power to her.

                        I only suggested she get a newer vehicle because hers is a rolling death trap.Cars that have holes in the floorboard tend to have exhaust leaks which can be deadly.Carbon monoxide is a silent killer.If a person has the money,which she obviously does,they should either repair the car or replace it.Most states have inspections to take dangerous junk cars off of the roads.Its one thing to risk your own life,but to risk the lives of your children by driving an unsafe car is criminal. 

                          JordanT1021's avatar - Lottery-062.jpg
                          North Carolina
                          United States
                          Member #53121
                          June 24, 2007
                          6498 Posts
                          Offline
                          Posted: February 11, 2009, 2:01 pm - IP Logged

                          paying off her house and fixing it up was a very smart idea.... she owes the house now with great repair work... in today's slow economy i bet people were lining up to get the work... you know the quality was more than lilkely the best the repair company has ever done, b/c they need the money for their business.. and in a few years that work will double in value.. going back to school was a dream come true.. i am glad to hear she did this..

                          the new car will come soon.. she probably will wait till the best deal comes around

                          money well spent

                          Quoted by favor4:

                          Your winning number is not under attack. It's about to HIT. So Hang In There"

                            dpoly1's avatar - driver
                            PA
                            United States
                            Member #66141
                            October 16, 2008
                            1672 Posts
                            Offline
                            Posted: February 11, 2009, 5:13 pm - IP Logged

                            I Agree! One should do what they want with their money. If she doesn't feel like getting a new car at the moment or feels that her vehicle works for her needs, more power to her.

                            Dangerous leaks in the floorboards don't work for anybodys needs.

                            She could kill herself or someone else.