Lanham man wins $1 million top prize on the $20 Get Rich scratch-off
Christmas was good to many Maryland Lottery players this year. After being closed for two days to honor the holiday, an influx of visitors came into Lottery headquarters. One of the day’s first visitors, an excited and anxious Lanham man, arrived clutching a winning $1 million Get Rich scratch-off. “I just wanted to get this ticket safely to your office,” the 65-year-old winner explained. “I didn’t want to allow myself to believe that I’d won until someone from your office actually processed the paperwork!”
The father of two is a decorated military veteran who has traveled the world with the United States Army during his almost 30 years of service. He recently had major surgery and made purchasing Lottery tickets part of his routine on days he has to go to rehabilitation. After heading home from his most recent appointment, he scratched his tickets and saw what looked like a small box where a number would usually be located. “I didn’t know what that box was,” he said. “When I looked closer, I realized it was a winning vault symbol and it had a $1,000,000 prize beneath it!”
Not believing his luck, he headed to his closest Lottery retailer and asked the cashier to scan the ticket. After the cashier gasped and advised him to go to Lottery headquarters, he went home to hide the ticket in his jewelry box until he could get to the claim center.
While he has no big plans for the money, the winner does have two short-term goals: pay off all of his outstanding debts and take his family to Hawaii for a vacation. “Hawaii is the most beautiful place I’ve been and I want my mother to be able to walk on those gorgeous beaches,” he said. “That would make me truly happy.”
The winning ticket was purchased at Dry Dock, located at 8901 Rockville Pike in Bethesda.