Barry County Man Wins $223,916 Fantasy 5 Jackpot

Mitch Gillons smiles after collecting a $223,916 Fantasy 5 jackpot.

Mitch Gillons smiles after collecting a $223,916 Fantasy 5 jackpot.

A Barry County man turned 10 empty Mountain Dew cans into a $223,916 Fantasy 5 jackpot from the Michigan Lottery.

Mitch Gillons, of Freeport, matched the numbers drawn on March 19 – 12-14-16-30-39 – to win the big prize. He bought his winning ticket at the One Stop Shop, located at 1335 North Broadway Street in Hastings.

“Mountain Dew is my favorite pop and each day I take 10 empty cans to the store and use the money to buy a Fantasy 5 ticket,” said Gillons. “It’s something I’ve done for years and this time it really paid off.”

When Gillons visited the One Stop Shop to check his Fantasy 5 ticket, he got a huge surprise.

“I know the people at the One Stop Shop really well,” said Gillons. “When they told me I had won, I really thought they were playing a trick on me. Finally, she showed me the slip from her machine and I still couldn’t believe it.”

The 60-year-old Gillons worked as a corrections officer for 30 years before retiring and taking a job with the Hastings School District food service team.

“I love my job at the school,” said Gillons. “I’ve been there for eight years delivering food to schools for the kitchen girls and I wouldn’t think of leaving even after winning this jackpot.”

Mitch Gillons' jackpot winning Fantasy 5 ticket,

Mitch Gillons’ jackpot winning Fantasy 5 ticket,

Gillons visited Lottery headquarters today to claim the big prize. With his winnings, he plans to remodel his farm house and put the remainder into savings.

“I’ve been enjoying my retirement and working for the Hastings School District and I plan to continue living the same way. I can’t wait to see what I can do with my next batch of Mountain Dew cans,” Gillons said.

Each Fantasy 5 play is only $1. For an additional $1 per play, EZmatch may be added to a Fantasy 5 ticket, giving players a chance to win up to $500 instantly. Fantasy 5 players select five numbers from one to 39. Players who match all five Fantasy 5 numbers drawn win a jackpot that starts at $100,000. Fantasy 5 drawings are held seven days a week at 7:29 p.m. Tonight’s Fantasy 5 jackpot is $120,000.

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