Husband Gift-Wraps $30,000 Winning Scratch-off to Surprise Wife

This Southern Maryland couple happily claimed a $30,000 top prize on the UNO scratch-off.

First players to claim top prize on Uno game

Give teacher Eric Koch of Swan Point an “A” for initiative and creativity in the way he told his wife that a $30,000 winning Maryland Lottery scratch-off had come their way.

His Lottery luck began when the Charles County husband stopped by Ole McDonnell’s Country Store in Newburg to try out the new $3 UNO game. After scratching off the fun-filled instant ticket, which is fashioned after the wildly popular card game, Eric learned he was the “numero uno” Lottery player to win the game’s $30,000 top prize!

“When I first realized I had won this much money, I was in complete shock,” said the 48-year-old. “I then tried calling my wife, who was out of town visiting our eldest son in college, to tell her the good news.”

After several failed attempts to reach his wife, Eric decided to surprise Trish when she got home. And surprise her he did! The creative husband put the winning UNO scratch-off in a gift-wrapped box.

“When I first got home, my husband looked at me with a big smile on his face and then gave me this wrapped gift,” said Trish. “I remember thinking, ‘What the heck could this be?’ The box was very light.”

Trish quickly understood there were 30,000 reasons her husband was smiling. “At first, I thought the ticket wasn’t real. When I realized it was a genuine winning ticket, we both were smiling from ear to ear.”

The lucky couple said they would love to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary early and plan a getaway to someplace tropical like Hawaii. “We spent our honeymoon in Hawaii after we first got married and we’d love to go back,” Eric said.

There are still plenty of prizes in the UNO game, including three more $30,000 top prizes and thousands of others ranging from $3 to $1,000. For selling the top-prize scratch-off in the game, the lucky retailer is also a winner. The Lottery will give Ole McDonnell’s Country Store located at 15486 Rock Point Road in Newburg a $300 bonus.