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Pennsylvania woman wins $1 million from scratch-off ticket following husband's recent death

May 20, 2020, 9:47 am

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Pennsylvania LotteryPennsylvania Lottery: Pennsylvania woman wins $1 million from scratch-off ticket following husband's recent deathRating:

Life-changing win comes as a comfort in difficult times

By Kate Northrop

After a Pennsylvania woman suffered the tragic loss of her husband, her life took another unexpected turn when she won $1 million from a scratch-off lottery ticket.

Charity Stivason's husband, Travis, suddenly passed away from a brain aneurysm on October 29 at only 47 years old.  Her big lottery win a few months later would not replace her loss, but did provide some rare comfort to her life.

Stivason of Leechburg pondered the idea that her late husband might have had something to do with her incredible luck. "That was a big blessing in an otherwise terrible six months," she said. "Sometimes I think, 'Did you do something for me?' I don't know. He always said he'd always take care of me."

The big win came as both a comfort and a shock. Stivason recalled that it felt as if her life was turned upside down in the blink of an eye.

"I still can't feel like it's real," she remarked. "I've always thought, 'Do these even exist?' I've heard of people winning $250,000, but I never heard of anybody winning that kind of money."

On April 29, Stivason bought the winning ticket at Sprankle's Neighborhood Market, a local grocery store, and left for work. She scratched off the ticket in her car, saw her winnings, and promptly turned around to head back to Sprankle's.

According to the Pennsylvania lottery, the ticket is from a $20 scratch-off game called Magnificent Millions. Players can win top prizes of up to $1 million.

Coincidentally, Stivason bought the winning ticket with a $40 prize won from a previous Magnificent Millions ticket.

The grocery store employees recognize Stivason as a regular customer and a pleasant person. They would often exchange banter about winning a million dollars, but not everyone was actually prepared in the event of a big prize win.

"I don't know what to do with this," one of the clerks said as Stivason presented her with the winning ticket.

Regardless, everyone at the store was excited for the Stivason's lottery win, especially since the last winning lottery ticket sold from the store was about 20 years ago, worth $250,000. Sprankle's assistant manager Karen Kalmar was eager to help Stivason fill out paperwork to claim the prize. The grocery store will receive a $5,000 bonus for selling the winning ticket.

Stivason, who has no plans to retire, is a direct-care worker for people with disabilities. She offers assistance with employment and helps them maintain their jobs.

Aside from a potential trip to Walt Disney World with her grandchildren, she does not currently have any other plans for spending her winnings.

She did, however, make one promise to herself. "I just want to fix my house and have enough money to where I don't have to eat cat food when I'm old."

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7 comments. Last comment 6 months ago by dpoly1.
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Raven62's avatar - binary
New Jersey
United States
Member #17842
June 28, 2005
134733 Posts

Party Congrats to the Winner! Party

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

Catch-22: A dilemma or difficult circumstance from which there is no escape because of mutually conflicting or dependent conditions.

Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges: When the republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous.

    Chasing $ Millions.
    White Shores- California
    United States
    Member #136473
    December 12, 2012
    6398 Posts

    Tremendous loss but out of the fire rose her Phoenix. Stating " l don't want to eat up eating cat food" speaks volume of her. She has her head about her & should do just fine. Yes Nod

     * Voice of Reason *   


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

      wander73's avatar - Lottery-008.jpg

      United States
      Member #153769
      March 24, 2014
      4721 Posts

      She doesn't have to worry if she does the right thing.  invest in the money,  take it to a tiaa or brokerage and live on the interest.

      I love pecans and making sales with commissions.   

      My amazon store is just like the lottery.

        United States
        Member #163184
        January 22, 2015
        2326 Posts

        Nice bittersweet story.   So happy she won that money; may she have a long , prosperous but most importantly healthy life.

          SaraAnnRapp's avatar - Lottery-059.jpg

          United States
          Member #205233
          March 19, 2020
          316 Posts

          Congrats to her! Hurray!

            brees2012's avatar - animal whale.jpg

            United States
            Member #125173
            March 26, 2012
            287 Posts

            Congrats to her Winnings !!!


            You want to make sure you've enough $$$$ as you grow old. 

            I learned Assistance Living and Nursing Homes extremely costly.

            Depends on your region .....

            Here it cost between $5,000 - $8,000 "per month"  for Assistance living and Nursing homes.

            Prices rises yearly !!!  From checking prices for other family members.

            Depends where you want to live .

            Ready To Win ....

              dpoly1's avatar - driver
              United States
              Member #66139
              October 16, 2008
              1993 Posts

              That's in my County!

              Here's looking to add another win tonight for Westmoreland County!

              dpoly1 - Playing the lottery to save the jobs of those that build, transport, sell & maintain luxury items! -


              Eschew Poverty ........... Vote Conservative!