LANSING, July 24, 2002 – G.A. Niles of Middleville was surprised to learn he had won a $175,000 Mega Millions prize after matching the first five numbers in the July 16 drawing. The winning numbers for that day’s drawing were: 10, 24, 35, 49, 52 and the Gold Mega Ball number was 47.
The winning Mega Millions "easy pick" ticket was purchased at Gregs Get It-N-Go, 509 Arlington, in Middleville.
"My wife and I were driving down the road when she looked up the winning numbers in the newspaper and compared them to those on our tickets," Niles said. "We had purchased the tickets on her birthday, and when we bought them, she said she felt like it was her lucky day. When we realized we had matched five numbers, we immediately pulled off the road at a gas station to get a winning number report. It was then we knew for sure that we had a winning ticket!"
However, at first, Niles was unsure of the value of his prize. Since two $175,000-winning tickets were sold for the July 16 drawing, Niles assumed he had to split that prize with another winner. He was shocked to learn that he had won a full $175,000 prize!
Niles, a regular Lottery player for the past 29 years, said he kept the winning ticket locked in a safe in his home before turning it in at Lottery headquarters in Lansing. On the way to Lansing, he kept the winning ticket in a plastic bag in his wife’s purse! The lucky man told Lottery officials that he plans to use his winnings to pay bills, make home improvements, purchase a hot tub and save the rest for retirement.
"My wife has been telling people for years that we were going to win the Lottery," Niles said. "I encourage other Lottery players to keep trying; you never know when you might win!"
The last Big Game drawing took place on Tuesday, May 14. On Wednesday, May 15, The Big Game was replaced by Mega Millions. Mega Millions is a multistate lottery game in Michigan, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Ohio and Virginia. Wagers cost $1 each and tickets may be purchased at more than 7,000 Michigan Lottery retailers statewide.
Mega Millions drawings are conducted every Tuesday and Friday at 11 p.m. The next Mega Millions drawing is Friday, July 26, with an estimated jackpot of $18 million. For more information about Mega Millions, visit the Michigan Lottery’s Web site, www.michigan.gov/lottery.
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