Upgraded lawnmower is on the way
By Kate Northrop
EPHRATA, Pa. — A great-great-grandmother has big plans for her yard after winning a $1.2 million Cash 5 jackpot in the Pennsylvania Lottery.
83-year-old Lillian Hess of Lancaster County has been playing Cash 5, the Lottery's longest-running game, for years. Her persistence has finally paid off to the tune of a $1.2 million jackpot from the Sat., Sept. 18 drawing.
"The funny thing is I usually check my numbers when the TV station has the drawing on, but I changed the channel, so I didn't see it," Hess said in a press release. "After I got my Sunday paper, I saw it. I started screaming for my son to come and double check!"
Sure enough, her ticket matched all five balls drawn, 11, 12, 15, 28, and 35, to win a grand total of $1,207,938.50.
Hess has eight children, 24 grandchildren, 30 great-grandchildren, and 11 great-great-grandchildren, and although winning the lottery came as a shock, she'll be happy to help out her family.
"It was a lot to take in," she admitted. "I'm going to pay my mortgage off and give some of it to my kids. I'm still working, at home, sewing."
Aside from paying off her mortgage and giving to family, Hess has one more thing topping her to-do list — buy a brand-new lawnmower.
"One of the things I'm going to do is buy a new mower! A riding mower!" the winner exclaimed. She says she still mows her grass at 83.
On Wednesday, Lottery officials presented a commemorative check to the winner of the $1.2 million Cash 5 jackpot at the store where the winning ticket was bought, Charlies Fuel & Deli on W. Main Street in Ephrata.
"We were excited to her that Lillian, a long-time customer of our store, won the big Cash 5 jackpot," store owner Charlie Rutt told the Lottery. "Being a Lottery retailer allows us to not only offer entertaining products, but also help the growing senior population in Pennsylvania. Many thanks to customers and employees for making this all possible."
For selling the jackpot-winning ticket, the store received a $10,000 bonus, and while both Hess and the retailer are celebrating the big win, the Lottery is also gearing up to commemorate a special event.
"Thanks to players like Lillian and retailer partners like Charlies Fuel & Deli, the Pennsylvania Lottery is able to do a great deal of good for older Pennsylvanians," Lottery Executive Director Drew Svitko said. "The Lottery is going to celebrate its 50th anniversary in March of next year, and over those 50 years we have generated more than $32.6 billion in benefits for senior programs."
In March, the Lottery's Cash 5 game relaunched as Cash 5 with Quick Cash, which offers a separate chance to instantly win $2 or $6 at odds of 1 in 4.71.