Welcome Guest
Log In | Register )
You last visited December 9, 2016, 9:55 pm
All times shown are
Eastern Time (GMT-5:00)

10 N.J. co-workers will split $216M lottery jackpot

Mega MillionsMega Millions: 10 N.J. co-workers will split $216M lottery jackpot
52
Rating:

Winners work in the Chubb IT Department

WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J. — Robert Space got into work at the Chubb Insurance company at 6:30 a.m. Wednesday, realized the lottery ticket he was holding matched the winning numbers, and fired off a one-line e-mail to his nine co-workers who had pitched in to buy it.

"We won the big one," it read.

The replies came back instantly: "Hahahaha" wrote one. "GREAT. Where do I pick up the cash?" joked another. Then they saw the ticket for themselves.

Space and his colleagues hit the second-largest single-ticket jackpot in New Jersey history, winning $216 million in the Mega Millions jackpot.

"I feel incredibly blessed. I can't even absorb it," Space said, surrounded by stunned colleagues and clutching the winning ticket during a news conference at their office in the central New Jersey town of Whitehouse Station.

Space, with $5 from each colleague, said he bought 50 quick-pick tickets Monday afternoon at the Singin Oil gas station in the shore town of Toms River.

Space stopped by the gas station again Wednesday morning to get a printout of the winning numbers to check the tickets.

"I jokingly asked him (the attendant) if anyone had won and if it was sold here, but he didn't know," Space said. So he stuffed the list in his pocket.

It wasn't until an hour or so later that Space had time to review the numbers, scanning each row and growing increasingly shocked as first one, then two, then three - then six numbers matched. He called his wife to make sure he wasn't hallucinating, then sent out the e-mail.

"It takes a lot of stress out of life," Space said of the winnings. The 10 will split a $216 million annuity or a one-time payout of about $140 million.

Lottery officials say no one has officially come forward to claim the prize yet. The 10 have not discussed when they will claim the prize but have a year to do so.

Taner Cetintas of Jackson, the owner of Singin Oil, will collect $10,000 for selling the ticket. Cetintas, a Turkish immigrant who worked for decades as a gas station manager before saving up enough to buy Singin Oil in January, said he was happy for his customer, and his own bonus would help pay bills.

The six men and four women who won said they've worked in Chubb's IT division from seven to 30 years and had been buying tickets together for years.

Their usual ticket buyer, Alan Mooney, always stops by colleagues' desks to collect ticket money, asking "Are ya in?" Mooney, who was among the winners, was in Florida on business. Space said Mooney was hurrying back to New Jersey, "upgrading to first class," he joked.

Space said there were some colleagues who had opted out of this ticket buy.

One regular buyer, Oscar Oviedo, had asked Space to count him in and promised $5 for his share. Space rushed over to him early Wednesday morning and demanded the money.

"I thought: 'How rude!'" Oviedo said with a laugh, recalling how he handed over $5, unsure why Space was being so insistent. "Then he said, 'OK, thanks — you're a millionaire.'"

The winning numbers were: 26, 32, 35, 43, 52 and the Mega Ball was 10.

In addition to Space, of Manchester Township; Mooney, of Budd Lake; and Oviedo, of Stewartsville, the other winners are: Gerard Solas, of Hillsborough; Anne LaFontaine, of Summit; Linda Harrington, of Bay Head; Melanie Jacob, of Alexandria Township; Joanne Roth, of Basking Ridge; Bill Bollwage, of Bridgewater; and Todd Ellis, of Maplewood.

Watch the video report

AP

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.

52 comments. Last comment 8 years ago by edge.
Page 1 of 4
Avatar

United States
Member #10720
January 23, 2005
933 Posts
Offline
Posted: March 4, 2009, 9:26 pm - IP Logged

Congrats to the winners. SPECIAL thanks to the PLAYERS across the USA who contributed to their joy. Claim it quick before the big O. raises your taxes! Buy some erl now and buy some gold. Buy a GM vehicle and subscribe to some newspapers, and eat out more often. Something how the winning ticket sold in Toms River, far away from the Chubb locaton, and during a snowstorm yet! I'd be giving up that commute.

I heard a winner in nj.. so being that's where I live and where I play, I figured I had no chance!

Hey I DID have the Bonus Ball...so there!

    Avatar
    Bethesda, Maryland
    United States
    Member #16901
    June 6, 2005
    446 Posts
    Offline
    Posted: March 4, 2009, 9:36 pm - IP Logged

    "Space said there were some colleagues who had opted out of this ticket buy"

    Now thats the sticky part.......I hope those who opted out of this ticket buy, don't become insensed or jealous and challenge the group and the "kitty".....this is what causes "wars" among co-workers and colleagues.....when members of the "usual players' are alleging refraining fron contributing to the "office pool".......then the office pool wins......lets just wait and see......I hope they do not end up in Court over this......hope they had an "office contract"  that can protect who played from those who didn't this time around.

      Perfecttiming2's avatar - redcross

      United States
      Member #65961
      October 11, 2008
      162 Posts
      Offline
      Posted: March 4, 2009, 9:37 pm - IP Logged

      Congrats to the winners!

      So happy for them and it has got to feel sooooooooooooooooo good right now!

      I do have one questions:

      It took 13 rolls for MM to reach $216 Millions ( I love the "jump" from $145m to $171m....that was cool)

      If it had rolled 5 more times....Do you think it would have reached the much anticipated $400 million?

       (It was so close...LOL!)

      I know it is going to happen....its only a matter of time....

        Avatar

        United States
        Member #10720
        January 23, 2005
        933 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: March 4, 2009, 10:02 pm - IP Logged

        Ironically...I think the best way to get a roll to 400M is with less tickets played per drawing..it would take a long time to GET there but the more play per drawing the more different numbers are in play and more coverage and thus more likely a winner at the higher amount. 145 to 171 meant what, 60 million sets of #s or so that drawing? 12 to 18 adds about 16 million # sets. The other way is to add more balls to "keep up with the Powerballers" but nobody likes that. How many did it take when it got to 390? 400 million $ means about 800M to 1 BILLION sets played but with some degree of overlap but it stands to reason that by 400 or before, someone won by then. Would be an interesting "Science Project" to figure this out.

          konane's avatar - wallace
          Atlanta, GA
          United States
          Member #1265
          March 13, 2003
          3333 Posts
          Offline
          Posted: March 4, 2009, 10:53 pm - IP Logged

          Huge congratulations to all the winners!!!!!!!

          Good luck to everyone!

            Avatar
            California
            United States
            Member #61514
            May 25, 2008
            67 Posts
            Offline
            Posted: March 4, 2009, 11:01 pm - IP Logged

            One regular buyer, Oscar Oviedo, had asked Space to count him in and promised $5 for his share. Space rushed over to him early Wednesday morning and demanded the money.

            "I thought: 'How rude!'" Oviedo said with a laugh, recalling how he handed over $5, unsure why Space was being so insistent. "Then he said, 'OK, thanks — you're a millionaire.'"

            Love this part. Smile


              United States
              Member #58528
              February 18, 2008
              710 Posts
              Offline
              Posted: March 4, 2009, 11:09 pm - IP Logged

              Congratulations to the LUCKY winners!

                Avatar

                United States
                Member #54390
                August 17, 2007
                313 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: March 4, 2009, 11:18 pm - IP Logged

                Congratulations to the LUCKY winners!

                I think it's really great when there's more winners. The more the better.

                  Avatar
                  Kennesaw, GA
                  United States
                  Member #62138
                  June 18, 2008
                  1413 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: March 4, 2009, 11:54 pm - IP Logged

                  I think it's really great when there's more winners. The more the better.

                  i agree


                    United States
                    Member #58528
                    February 18, 2008
                    710 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: March 4, 2009, 11:56 pm - IP Logged

                    I think it's really great when there's more winners. The more the better.

                    If it works for them its cool.

                    Personaly,I'm not crazy about sharing so I don't join pools.

                      Avatar
                      NY
                      United States
                      Member #23835
                      October 16, 2005
                      3475 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: March 5, 2009, 12:03 am - IP Logged

                      One regular buyer, Oscar Oviedo, had asked Space to count him in and promised $5 for his share. Space rushed over to him early Wednesday morning and demanded the money.

                      "I thought: 'How rude!'" Oviedo said with a laugh, recalling how he handed over $5, unsure why Space was being so insistent. "Then he said, 'OK, thanks — you're a millionaire.'"

                      Love this part. Smile

                      "Their usual ticket buyer, Alan Mooney, always stops by colleagues' desks to collect ticket money, asking "Are ya in?"

                      When I first read that I figured they had a 100% chance of being sued if anybody wasn't included in this one. I'll presume that Space had already bought the tickets  that  Oviedo owed the money for, but it's also possible that  he figured they woul dbe sued otherwise. Whatever the reason, tthat he took care of Oviedo could make it harder for anyone else who wants to claim that they had wanted to be in the pool but were unfairly excluded.

                        justxploring's avatar - villiarna
                        Wandering Aimlessly
                        United States
                        Member #25360
                        November 5, 2005
                        4461 Posts
                        Offline
                        Posted: March 5, 2009, 12:04 am - IP Logged

                        One regular buyer, Oscar Oviedo, had asked Space to count him in and promised $5 for his share. Space rushed over to him early Wednesday morning and demanded the money.

                        "I thought: 'How rude!'" Oviedo said with a laugh, recalling how he handed over $5, unsure why Space was being so insistent. "Then he said, 'OK, thanks — you're a millionaire.'"

                        Love this part. Smile

                        Yes, it's a great story.  However, it might also open up the door for other coworkers to say they also wanted to play and would have given Space the money on Wednesday.

                         

                        Edit:  Coincidentally, KY Floyd & I commented at the same time, quoting the same post.  Anyway, please explain what you mean that it makes it harder for others to sue.  Couldn't they say "I said I wanted in, but he forgot to write down my name."   If I were in a pool, I'd want the rules to state that anyone participating in the pool has to pay before the drawing.

                          ThatScaryChick's avatar - x1MqPuM
                          Idaho
                          United States
                          Member #56506
                          November 21, 2007
                          6537 Posts
                          Offline
                          Posted: March 5, 2009, 12:10 am - IP Logged

                          I think it's really great when there's more winners. The more the better.

                          I agree. It gives more people to chance to experience a big win. Congrats to the winners!

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

                            diamondpalace's avatar - Untitled 2.jpg
                            Dallas, TX
                            United States
                            Member #60284
                            April 12, 2008
                            3856 Posts
                            Offline
                            Posted: March 5, 2009, 1:11 am - IP Logged

                            Awesome wins by many!