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Tennessee man misplaces his million-dollar lottery ticket, then finds it lying in a parking lot

Mar 19, 2021, 4:18 pm

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Tennessee LotteryTennessee Lottery: Tennessee man misplaces his million-dollar lottery ticket, then finds it lying in a parking lotRating:

It's a miracle recovery that averted tragedy

By Kate Northrop

SPARTA, Tenn. — A Tennessee player became a million dollars richer overnight and almost immediately lost his millionaire status the next day thanks to a fluke that had the potential to leave things on a very tragic note.

All hope seemed lost when a winning Tennessee Lottery ticket worth $1,178,746 was thought to be gone for good, rolling around in the dirt somewhere or blowing around in the breeze on a particularly windy day. In what seemed like a miracle, the rogue ticket was recovered by its rightful owner after it had sat untouched in a parking lot for an hour.

Nick Slatten of Sparta spent the day last Wednesday laying tile in Smithville and decided to stop at the nearby Village Market convenience store on North Congress Boulevard before heading home. There, he picked up a beverage and a lottery ticket for that night's Tennessee Cash drawing.

The next morning, he checked the results for the drawing on Mar. 10 and noticed that he had matched two numbers. He looked again and felt a rush of surprise when all the numbers drawn matched the numbers on his ticket — 2, 4, 23, 27, 34, and Cash Ball 2 — earning him the $1.18 million jackpot.

"I was stunned," Slatten told the Lottery. "I couldn't believe it. I can't express it. It was something else."

He hurried off to his fiancée Michelle's workplace in Sparta to share the news. After that, he ran some errands, one of which was taking his brother to the O'Reilly's Auto Parts store on West Bockman Way to buy a car part, followed by lunch.

Slatten realized an hour later that his million-dollar ticket was missing.

"I couldn't find it anywhere," he recalled.

As far as Slatten knew, the ticket could have been anywhere. It was a notably windy day, so it was very possible that it could have been sailing through the air or utterly lost. The ticket also wasn't signed, meaning that anyone meandering by could have picked it up and claimed it for themselves.

He was not about to give up on his million-dollar prize. Slatten quickly started to retrace his steps, which eventually brought him back to the O'Reilly Auto Parts parking lot. There, lying in the pavement completely untouched was the elusive lottery ticket. He picked it up from the ground, where it was sitting right next to the driver's side door of another car.

"It's a million-dollar ticket, and someone stepped right over it," he remarked.

In the future, Slatten said that he and his fiancée will continue working and plan on using the winnings to buy a home and better vehicles. Aiming live life with "not a whole lot of worries," they have plans for investing a portion of the prize.

According to the Lottery, Slatten's winning ticket is one of five worth $1 million or more sold in Tennessee this month and the 310th ticket sold worth at least $1 million since the Lottery began in 2004.

Hopefully, the other winners didn't have the same scare that Slatten did, but if one thing is for certain, he will have quite the story to tell down the road about winning the lottery.

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29 comments. Last comment 20 days ago by brees2012.
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Simpsonville
United States
Member #163182
January 22, 2015
2506 Posts
Online

Felt myself going through the emotions he did reading this!    And right next to someone's car!!

    Avatar
    Chasing $ Millions.
    White Shores- California
    United States
    Member #136471
    December 12, 2012
    6562 Posts
    Offline

    Believe it or not, but Nick's ticket was "safe" out in the parking lot. No one picks up tickets laying on the ground  out there checkimg to see if it's a winner,  it's the discarded  tickets & scratchers INSIDE convenient store trash cans you need to worry about. People rummaging through the pile, looking for a displaced winner. Yes Nod

     * Voice of Reason *   

     

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

      KY Floyd's avatar - lysol avatar.jpg
      NY
      United States
      Member #23834
      October 16, 2005
      4368 Posts
      Offline

      Maybe when he gets the money he'll be able to afford a wallet. Or pants with pockets. Seriously, where did he put it once he found out that it was a winner that he managed to lose it in a parking lot?

        CDanaT's avatar - Nolz june15.jpg
        Central TN
        United States
        Member #121187
        January 4, 2012
        5106 Posts
        Offline

        Thud

        Integrity: There is just no substitute.

          Avatar

          Sweden
          Member #153622
          March 20, 2014
          222 Posts
          Offline

          Makes me remember the old time here in Sweden where you used to buy a lottery ticket in store, then came  the registration with players card, no you could loose your ticket (I did once) and in 60 days your winnings would be transfered to ypur bank account. And now I played online for over 10 and all prizes are safe.

          Return of Lotto Investment, ROI: ROI 2020: 31% | 2019: 39% | 2018 50% | 2017 47% | 2016 12,6% | 2015 20% | 2014 20%

          Return of Stock market investment: 144% (2017-2021)

          Notable wins: Viking Lotto $1.152 - 2017

            Avatar

            United States
            Member #136773
            December 18, 2012
            20 Posts
            Offline

            I agree, most people don't pick up discarded lottery tickets laying in parking lots. I usually don't either but I picked up one back in January 2021 after the Mega Millions jackpot of 1.5B had already been won. I saw on the ticket that the Mega ball number was 24 and I remembered that was the winning ball number. I picked up the ticket hoping the person who discarded did not already cash the ticket in. Sure enough he/she did not and I won $2. 

              Avatar
              Simpsonville
              United States
              Member #163182
              January 22, 2015
              2506 Posts
              Online

              I agree, most people don't pick up discarded lottery tickets laying in parking lots. I usually don't either but I picked up one back in January 2021 after the Mega Millions jackpot of 1.5B had already been won. I saw on the ticket that the Mega ball number was 24 and I remembered that was the winning ball number. I picked up the ticket hoping the person who discarded did not already cash the ticket in. Sure enough he/she did not and I won $2. 

              Been dumpster diving lately (trash cans) and so far 629 entries into a drawing.

               

              Scanned my CB 225 ticket, said won $1 and free ticket, got the free ticket and went home.   Well hope the next person notices the free $1!

                Avatar
                Grand Rapids Michigan
                United States
                Member #179867
                February 10, 2017
                78 Posts
                Offline

                Believe it or not, but Nick's ticket was "safe" out in the parking lot. No one picks up tickets laying on the ground  out there checkimg to see if it's a winner,  it's the discarded  tickets & scratchers INSIDE convenient store trash cans you need to worry about. People rummaging through the pile, looking for a displaced winner. Yes Nod

                Probably due to COVID. I wouldnt't go around picking up random tickets either. Some time I do use rubber gloves to grab discarded scratch-offs. Not in the hope they are a winner, but for the extra spins.

                  Avatar

                  United States
                  Member #136773
                  December 18, 2012
                  20 Posts
                  Offline

                  Probably due to COVID. I wouldnt't go around picking up random tickets either. Some time I do use rubber gloves to grab discarded scratch-offs. Not in the hope they are a winner, but for the extra spins.

                  Yeah COVID-19 has put a damper on things like picking up discarded tickets, in convenient store trash cans. I did find a discarded stratch-off laying beside a lottery ticket checker a few days ago. I decided to check the ticket and sure enough it was a $5 winner. I no longer do it as much as I did before but I do it on occasion and use a lot of hand sanitizer. I am looking for winners and for the reward points and second chance entries

                    Avatar

                    United States
                    Member #136773
                    December 18, 2012
                    20 Posts
                    Offline

                    Probably due to COVID. I wouldnt't go around picking up random tickets either. Some time I do use rubber gloves to grab discarded scratch-offs. Not in the hope they are a winner, but for the extra spins.

                    Yeah, I used to go through the convenient store trash cans a lot before the COVID-19 pandemic but not much anymore. When I do, I use a lot of hand sanitizer. I am looking for discarded winning tickets and the non-winners for reward points and second chance prize entries. The most I have found on a discarded scratch-off is $50

                      MatrixMan369's avatar - pyramid
                      Florida
                      United States
                      Member #209969
                      September 22, 2020
                      595 Posts
                      Offline

                      Thud

                      I Agree!

                      "My calculations are based on the SCIENCE of LETTERS, NUMBERS and ASTROLOGY," W.D.Gann

                        Avatar
                        Kentucky
                        United States
                        Member #32651
                        February 14, 2006
                        9128 Posts
                        Offline

                        Saw a similar scenario on Facebook where someone found a ticket in a parking lot that turned out to be a multi-million winner. The question was would you cash the ticket or look for the person that purchased the ticket. My answer if it was a QP, the person would never know what they lost.

                        Not much can be said for anyone losing their million dollar ticket after checking it.

                        It's not my fault! I voted for Amy.

                          Avatar
                          Chasing $ Millions.
                          White Shores- California
                          United States
                          Member #136471
                          December 12, 2012
                          6562 Posts
                          Offline

                          Saw a similar scenario on Facebook where someone found a ticket in a parking lot that turned out to be a multi-million winner. The question was would you cash the ticket or look for the person that purchased the ticket. My answer if it was a QP, the person would never know what they lost.

                          Not much can be said for anyone losing their million dollar ticket after checking it.

                          Facebook huh? I see the kids are out.

                           * Voice of Reason *   

                           

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

                            Avatar
                            Northern Beaches
                            Australia
                            Member #187034
                            January 9, 2018
                            135 Posts
                            Offline

                            This is exactly why I love subscriptions, you can't loose your ticket!