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Va. grocery store worker's lottery ticket mistake turns into $7 million grand prize

Cash4LifeCash4Life: Va. grocery store worker's lottery ticket mistake turns into $7 million grand prize
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FALLS CHURCH, Va. — A Virginia grocery store employee's mistake during Powerball jackpot fever earlier this month ended up turning into a $7 million windfall.

Michael Donnelly was ringing up Powerball tickets for customers at the Harris Teeter store in Falls Church. But for one transaction, he accidentally punched the wrong button on the lottery terminal and printed a Cash4Life ticket that the customer didn't want.

Donnelly ended up buying the "mistake" ticket for the January 7th drawing and it turned out to be winning ticket for the game's top prize. According to Virginia Lottery, the odds of winning the top prize for Cash4Life are 1 in 21.8 million.

The Woodbridge man chose the one-time lump sum of $7 million over the option of receiving $1,000 per day for the rest of his life.

After he called his wife about the big jackpot win, she told her husband, "If that's true, you have to come home because I'm about to have a heart attack!"

Harris-Teeter received a $50,000 bonus from Virginia Lottery for selling the winning ticket.

"It still hasn't hit me yet," Donnelly said.

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

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

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46 comments. Last comment 10 months ago by Murgatroyd.
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hearsetrax's avatar - 0118

United States
Member #52345
May 21, 2007
2657 Posts
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Posted: February 1, 2016, 8:45 am - IP Logged

    Avatar
    CA
    United States
    Member #167942
    August 7, 2015
    34 Posts
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    Posted: February 1, 2016, 9:17 am - IP Logged

    Congrats to the grocery store worker and i bet that customer that turned down the ticket is full of regret .He  or she should have accepted the ticket .It was a blessing in disguise .

      cbr$'s avatar - maren
      Cordova,Al.
      United States
      Member #104482
      January 15, 2011
      4865 Posts
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      Posted: February 1, 2016, 9:18 am - IP Logged

      A Virginia grocery store employee's mistake during Powerball jackpot fever earlier this month ended up turning into a $7 million windfall.

      Michael Donnelly was ringing up Powerball tickets for customers at the Harris Teeter store in Falls Church. But for one transaction, he accidentally punched the wrong button on the lottery terminal and printed a Cash4Life ticket that the customer didn't want.

      Donnelly ended up buying the "mistake" ticket for the January 7th drawing and it turned out to be winning ticket for the game's top prize. According to Virginia Lottery, the odds of winning the top prize for Cash4Life are 1 in 21.8 million.

      The Woodbridge man chose the one-time lump sum of $7 million over the option of receiving $1,000 per day for the rest of his life.

      After he called his wife about the big jackpot win, she told her husband, "If that's true, you have to come home because I'm about to have a heart attack!"

      Harris-Teeter received a $50,000 bonus from Virginia Lottery for selling the winning ticket.

      "It still hasn't hit me yet," Donnelly said.

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

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

      Congratulation to Michael Donnelly. To win on a mistake ticket. Wow was he blessed!

        mypiemaster's avatar - 2015021003pileofcash
        JACKPOT HUNTER

        United States
        Member #141034
        April 2, 2013
        1408 Posts
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        Posted: February 1, 2016, 9:40 am - IP Logged

        This is precisely why I always buy "mine and other peoples' mistake tickets". The store clerks love it. I do not want to be the chump who refused a blessing in disguise just because of a few chump change.

        Seek and ye shall find -Matt. 7:7 ...Ask and ye shall receive -John 16:24 ...Give and it shall be given unto you -Luke 6:38 ...Be careful what you ask for!!! -Mypiemaster 1:1

        Having Money Solves Problems That Not Having Money Creates Yes Nod ****John Carlton****

          haymaker's avatar - Lottery-012.jpg
          Egg Harbor twp.south Jersey shore
          United States
          Member #112968
          June 29, 2011
          3854 Posts
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          Posted: February 1, 2016, 10:08 am - IP Logged

          How can I make a mistake on purpose ?

          Can anyone come up with a system for making mistakes ?

          Was the mistake a QP ?

          Extraordinary Popular Delusions & the Madness of Crowds    -- Charles Mackay  LL.D.

            zephbe's avatar - animal butterfly.jpg
            South Carolina
            United States
            Member #77167
            July 15, 2009
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            Posted: February 1, 2016, 10:53 am - IP Logged

            I wish I would have a mistake turn into a win!  Congrats to the winner.  Enjoy.

            Every champion was once a contender who refused to give up.-Rocky Balboa

            “Don’t let someone who gave up on their dreams talk you out of going after yours.” – Zig Ziglar

              rcbbuckeye's avatar - Lottery-043.jpg
              Texas
              United States
              Member #55889
              October 23, 2007
              5588 Posts
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              Posted: February 1, 2016, 10:55 am - IP Logged

              How can I make a mistake on purpose ?

              Can anyone come up with a system for making mistakes ?

              Was the mistake a QP ?

              If it was a self pick there would most likely have been a play slip, which means there wouldn't have been a mistake.

              So, yes, the mistake was very likely a QP. He simply pushed the wrong button on the terminal.

              CAN'T WIN IF YOU'RE NOT IN

              A DOLLAR AND A DREAM (OR $2)

                OneTrickpony's avatar - thought

                United States
                Member #167657
                July 25, 2015
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                Posted: February 1, 2016, 10:58 am - IP Logged

                Good for him, that is awesome!  Bet that customer who refused the ticket is kicking himself daily.  I always take the mistakes too, because you never know!

                  lulu1feather's avatar - 2uehclf
                  Oregon
                  United States
                  Member #168137
                  August 17, 2015
                  124 Posts
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                  Posted: February 1, 2016, 11:06 am - IP Logged

                  And that is why I have kept every "Oops". Although, I am still waiting for one of them to have that kind of an outcome! 

                  Congrats to the winner!

                    IPlayWeekly's avatar - avatarmoney
                    Columbus, Ohio
                    United States
                    Member #128906
                    June 5, 2012
                    591 Posts
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                    Posted: February 1, 2016, 11:26 am - IP Logged

                    I bet he's not going to work today,  I'd retire myself and wife.  We'll travel and run the family business.  Congrats.... Now he has real money to play with.

                      dallascowboyfan's avatar - tiana the-princess-and-the-frog.jpg
                      Oklahoma
                      United States
                      Member #82391
                      November 12, 2009
                      6290 Posts
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                      Posted: February 1, 2016, 11:49 am - IP Logged

                      Congratulations Hurray! Thumbs Up

                      I Love Pink & Green 1908

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                        Simpsonville
                        United States
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                        January 22, 2015
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                        Posted: February 1, 2016, 11:53 am - IP Logged

                        I remember Mum telling me donkey's years ago about a customer in WA state where they retired to.  This customer refused a 'mistake' ticket.  Clerk had to buy it and won $7 or $8 million.  Love good Karma stories like these.

                          tnlottodreamer's avatar - animal bear.jpg
                          The Great Smoky Mountains
                          United States
                          Member #59921
                          March 31, 2008
                          266 Posts
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                          Posted: February 1, 2016, 12:28 pm - IP Logged

                          That is a awesome win. I always ask the store if they have any mistake tickets cause you never know...

                          I Agree!*** You Can't Win, If You Don't Enter***

                            noise-gate's avatar - images q=tbn:ANd9GcR91HDs4UJhjxO7cmeMQWZ5lB_FOcMLOGicau4V74R45tDgPWrr
                            Bay Area - California
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                            Member #136477
                            December 12, 2012
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                            Posted: February 1, 2016, 1:00 pm - IP Logged

                            Be the fly on the wall..

                            Michael :Sir, l accidentally punched the wrong ticket for you, totally my fault,  however l need to ask, do you want this ticket?

                            Customer: Does it look like a Powerball ticket to you, does it look like l came in here  looking for pennies on my Dollar?

                            Michael: No problem Sir, just had to ask. .Big Smile 

                            Congratulations Michael. ....

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