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9/11 hero wins $5 million NY Lottery prize

New York LotteryNew York Lottery: 9/11 hero wins $5 million NY Lottery prize

A New York City firefighter forced to retire due to Ground Zero ailments won a $5 million jackpot with a New York Lottery scratch-off ticket.

Carmelo Mercado, of Harriman in Orange County, New York, hit paydirt with a $20 "Cash X 100" ticket, sources said.

Mercado, 63, a retired member of FDNY Battalion 49 in Astoria, said he had initially purchased one ticket, but then decided on a whim to purchase another — which won.

"I was in shock," he said. "I couldn't believe it, to be honest with you. I didn't sleep for two days after it happened. My mind went totally blank."

Mercado, who receives a $91,000-a-year pension, will get a $3.3 million lump-sum payout after taxes from his lottery win.

He said he was among The Bravest who rushed to the World Trade Center on 9/11, and came down with lung ailments after long hours working on the pile.

His condition forced his retirement, and he's a beneficiary of the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, which provides continued funding for health-care programs for firefighters, cops and others hit by 9/11-related ailments.

The father of three adult children and a 10-year-old says his experiences made him more of a risk-taker.

"After 9/11 sometimes you just have to be reckless; you never know."

News story photo(Click to display full-size in gallery)

NY Post

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24 comments. Last comment 2 years ago by Angel809.
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Raven62's avatar - binary
New Jersey
United States
Member #17843
June 28, 2005
64760 Posts
Posted: July 2, 2015, 11:42 am - IP Logged


A mind once stretched by a new idea never returns to its original dimensions!

    sully16's avatar - sharan
    United States
    Member #81740
    October 28, 2009
    48907 Posts
    Posted: July 2, 2015, 12:30 pm - IP Logged

    Nice, Congrats to the Brave Man.


      music*'s avatar - bee
      Fresno California
      United States
      Member #157856
      August 2, 2014
      1822 Posts
      Posted: July 2, 2015, 1:30 pm - IP Logged

       Congratulations to the Courageous !!    Will any LP Member react the same way he initially did ? Stunned and thoughtless ? Shocked    Sleepless for two days !!

      Keep the good times rolling !!!  White Bounce

        music*'s avatar - bee
        Fresno California
        United States
        Member #157856
        August 2, 2014
        1822 Posts
        Posted: July 2, 2015, 2:04 pm - IP Logged

        CNN's The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer just featured this story. Carmela Mercado was shown with NY's Lottery spokesperson Yolando Vega . All smiles everywhere.

        Keep the good times rolling !!!  White Bounce

          wizeguy's avatar - animaniacs04

          United States
          Member #15143
          May 10, 2005
          417 Posts
          Posted: July 2, 2015, 2:31 pm - IP Logged

          Congrats Mr Mercado and thanks for your years of service to your city!

            noise-gate's avatar - images q=tbn:ANd9GcR91HDs4UJhjxO7cmeMQWZ5lB_FOcMLOGicau4V74R45tDgPWrr
            Chasing the Dream.
            Utopia- California
            United States
            Member #136477
            December 12, 2012
            4527 Posts
            Posted: July 2, 2015, 3:40 pm - IP Logged

            The Absolute best news l have read from LP so far this year..Way to go Carmelo..


            People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

              The land of Canals
              United States
              Member #137589
              January 7, 2013
              168 Posts
              Posted: July 2, 2015, 4:33 pm - IP Logged

              Thank you for your service and sacrifice Mr. Mercado. Congratulations to the Mercado family.PatriotHurray!

                ElinaSammy2081's avatar - Lottery-062.jpg
                Bronx, NY
                United States
                Member #164554
                March 6, 2015
                1372 Posts
                Posted: July 2, 2015, 4:42 pm - IP Logged

                Congratulations Mr Mercado on his win.

                  Gleno's avatar - Lottery-001.jpg
                  New Jersey
                  United States
                  Member #80354
                  September 25, 2009
                  717 Posts
                  Posted: July 2, 2015, 8:17 pm - IP Logged

                  Could not have gone to a more deserving civil servant. Congrats to Mr. Mercado.

                  US Flag

                    Technut's avatar - moon
                    3rd Rock from Sun
                    United States
                    Member #159103
                    September 13, 2014
                    155 Posts
                    Posted: July 2, 2015, 8:26 pm - IP Logged

                    Congratulations Carmelo Mercado on your win and thanks for your service to your city.

                    Yesterday is History, Tomorrow is a Mystery, Today is a gift that's why it's called the PRESENT! (c8

                      United States
                      Member #156369
                      June 16, 2014
                      570 Posts
                      Posted: July 2, 2015, 9:02 pm - IP Logged

                      Felicidades! CONGRATS. . . !

                      Senor mercado y' que dios te bendiga siempre ...CheersTu nena es hermosa awww que chulo .. how  cute she is so sweet, i am tearin' up in the eyes learning of this. I REALLY am."

                      God shall forever, bless us who are good people and not haters,or bullies in life and those

                      who give their all to better OUR communites,who PROTECT us, and heroes,and other good beautiful people en vida.


                      Ahora...(now) i hope he utilize his winnings prudently,make it last for him and the familia.

                      awww so happy for him.adios... noche.

                        Baton Rouge, LA
                        United States
                        Member #4602
                        May 7, 2004
                        701 Posts
                        Posted: July 2, 2015, 9:21 pm - IP Logged

                        Fantastic! Glad to see someone like this, a true hero, win.

                        Prisoner Six

                        "I am not a number, I am a free man!"


                          United States
                          Member #122691
                          February 6, 2012
                          332 Posts
                          Posted: July 2, 2015, 9:29 pm - IP Logged

                          Every once in awhile the universe does the right thing. Glad a good man won it. Congratulations. I can't even begin to imagine what he went through. 

                            HaveABall's avatar - rocket

                            United States
                            Member #72448
                            March 18, 2009
                            1260 Posts
                            Posted: July 2, 2015, 9:41 pm - IP Logged

                            Group HugCongratulations Carmello, on another huge financial haul for you and yours!

                            It's amazing how a New York City firefighter forced to retire [way early] due to Ground Zero ailments can receive:  a good monthly disability income, a great monthly pension income, a great fully-paid full-family health and dental insurance plan, another child, renewed vitality, and a multi-million net lump-sum jackpot payoff from the NY Lottery Headquarters!

                            Having several millions of dollars in my financial accounts means receiving several valuable services each day!