|Posted: January 9, 2006, 4:32 pm - IP Logged|
I thought for sure this was going to go unclaimed. What a story read below:
LANSING, January 9, 2006 – With just a few hours to spare, a Detroit man and his wife claimed a $1.5 million Winfall prize that was set to expire at the close of business today.
The winners, both hospital workers, redeemed the ticket that had been purchased at Meijer’s in Roseville on January 8, 2005. They chose the one-time cash payment and after 25 percent federal and 3.9 percent state taxes, walked away with a check for $573,815.
The player chose the winning numbers -- 4, 5, 7, 10, 21 and 23 -- after having a dream about his deceased parents. The numbers represent the months, dates and years of their births.
“Congratulations to this lucky couple!” Lottery Commissioner Gary Peters said. “We are so pleased that they claimed their prize in time and hope they enjoy their winnings.”
Although they chose to remain anonymous, the couple related the story of how they came to realize that they were on the verge of missing out on the big prize. Last year, the man was redeeming Lottery tickets at the Roseville Meijer and when he won $2, opted to turn that money back for the purchase of two Winfall wagers. He then placed the ticket in the inside pocket of his leather jacket, a gift from his wife that he was wearing for the first time.
That day, he put the jacket in the closet, and admitting he was not that fond of it, said he never gave it, or the tickets, another thought. Recently, his wife purchased a new jacket for him but it still wasn’t what he wanted, and when on January 2 she told him to get it out of the closet so she could return it, he came across the original jacket. For some reason, he said, he was drawn to it and pulled it from the closet. It was then that he realized something was in the pocket: a Lottery ticket that was about to expire.
The player put the ticket in his wallet, knowing he had to check on it. But that didn’t happen until Friday of last week, when he stopped at the same Meijer where he bought the ticket last year. He asked the clerk for the January 8 numbers and after reviewing his ticket, realized “I knew I won something!”
The player said he had not seen any of the media coverage of the near-expired jackpot, but after he realized he was holding the jackpot winner, he and his wife saw several news broadcasts on the ticket.
The couple has two sons, one in college and one in high school, and plans to use the winnings toward their educations.
The winner is a regular Lottery player and his largest prize prior to this win was $247.
All proceeds from the Lottery are contributed to the state School Aid Fund which supports kindergarten through 12th grade public education in Michigan. In fiscal year 2005, the contribution was $667.6 million.