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Press release

July 17, 2012

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July, 2012 | Winners Stories | Southern California

Salesman Stops off for a Cold Drink, Collects MEGA Millions® Ticket Worth More Than $190,000


SACRAMENTO – George Manzo and his family reside in South Carolina. As a salesman, however, George’s work tends to bring him to California fairly often. In fact, he just recently sold his business and has been working on a contract that’s set to run out in December. He said he wasn’t sure what he was going to do after that, but maybe now he has a little more time to think about it.

George was the lucky winner of the $190,535 MEGA Millions prize from Friday night’s draw. He purchased his ticket at the 7-Eleven located at 1485 Ocotillo Drive in El Centro (Imperial County). The ticket successfully matched the numbers 24, 13, 46, 6 and 7, missing only the Mega number of 7.

He told us he bought his ticket on July 12, but how he came to buy it was an interesting story. He had no intention of going to El Centro that day, but his sales job had him on the road. The day was hot and there was a 7-Eleven right by the freeway, so he decided to stop in for a Slurpee and three MEGA Millions tickets. And then he waited.

The weekend came and went, and then yesterday George said he stopped to get gas and coffee and he decided to check his three tickets. The first ticket? Zero. The second ticket? $2. The third ticket? $190,535. Cue disbelief. George said he checked his numbers multiple times before calling the clerk over to help him. “She told me ‘you just won!’” George said.

George then called his wife of 30 years to give her the good news. When he told her about their good fortune she thought he was joking! After telling her for the fourth time that he had won the Lottery, George said, “All I heard was four ladies screaming.”

As far as what he plans to do with his winnings? George has already spoken with his tax guy, but he really has no solid plans due to some recent health issues. He and his wife, however, hope the money will finally allow him to slow down and spend more time at home. “This money definitely helps,” George said. “It’s a Godsend.”

Do you also want to win big? Tonight’s MEGA Millions jackpot will be $28 million. The cash value is an estimated $21.6 million.

The California Lottery reminds winners to sign the back of their ticket, keep tickets in a safe place and contact Lottery officials or visit their local Lottery District Office as soon as possible. Winners have 180 days from the date of the draw to claim prizes.

MEGA Millions is a multistate game, played in California and 43 other jurisdictions (41 states plus the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands). Players pick five numbers from 1 to 56 plus a Mega number from 1 to 46. Draw times are Tuesdays and Fridays at 8:00 p.m. PST. Tickets are $1 and can be purchased from any of the more than 21,000 California Lottery retailers. Please visit the California Lottery’s MEGA Millions site for more information. 

The mission of the California Lottery is to provide supplemental funding to California schools while simultaneously supporting local communities. More than 94 cents of every dollar spent by our players goes back to local communities in the form of contributions to public schools and colleges, prizes and retail compensation. Since 2000, Lottery players have contributed $1 billion to public schools each year, and, since we began in 1985, Lottery players have contributed a total of more than $24 billion to education. The California Lottery urges its customers to play responsibly and within their budgets. If you feel you have a gambling problem, or know someone who does, you can get help at 1-800-GAMBLER.

See More Press Releases: July, 2012 | Winners Stories | Southern California