Dec. 16 Melancholy, Merry for Linthicum Heights Keno Winner

A subdued celebration was the order of the day for winner Steve Gary Jones Jr., who honored his late mother as he claimed his prize.

Son reflects on mother’s passing a year to the day he claims prize

For Steve Gary Jones Jr., Dec. 16 was a day of mixed emotions. The Linthicum Heights man was happy because he was at Maryland Lottery headquarters in Baltimore claiming a $25,021.50 Keno prize. His win was bittersweet, though, because he claimed it on the anniversary of his mother’s passing.

“I know she’s looking over me,” said the 48-year-old aspiring actor. A big fan of Packaged Keno to Go games, Steve regularly gets 100 draws of a 10-spot game for $25 and checks his numbers later. The Anne Arundel County resident goes with the same set of numbers: his mother’s birthday and her age when she died; his birthday, age and year of birth; and his girlfriend’s birthday and age.

When his numbers hit, the loyal player was surprised. Although he’s won small amounts in the past, he’s never won big before. “I’m probably breaking even now,” he quipped.

Steve and his girlfriend will certainly celebrate the big win. Although he has no immediate plans for the windfall beyond paying some bills, the Keno fan plans to focus more on his future in the New Year. “I’ve bought a lot of bricks for other people, but I’m going to start working on a house for me,” is how he put it.

Sharing in Steve’s good fortune is Arundel Mills Exxon at 7043 Arundel Mills Circle in Hanover. The Anne Arundel County Lottery retailer receives a bonus of $250.21, equal to 1 percent of the prize, for selling a winning Keno ticket of $10,000 or more.