This Salisbury winner and her sister are about to take a cruise, and then she’s charting her course to a more comfortable life, thanks to her lucky Cash4Life ticket.
‘Bahama Mama’ becomes third Marylander to win game’s top prize
An Eastern Shore healthcare worker has bad news for the clients who asked that she never retire because they loved working with her.
“I told them the only reason I wouldn’t go to work would be if I hit the Lottery,” said the Salisbury Cash4Life player. Guess what — she just did! The grandmother of nine won $1,000 a day for life in the Feb. 11 Cash4Life drawing, becoming the third Marylander to claim a top prize in the multi-state game.
“I’m shaky,” said the 50-something winner, who said she was in shock as she sat in the Winner’s Circle at Maryland Lottery headquarters in Baltimore on Feb. 12. Life changed for the loyal Lottery player early that morning when she checked the winning numbers from the Feb. 11 drawing against the numbers on her $2 quick-pick ticket. She was thinking about the $1,000-a-day top prize when she bought the ticket at Winter Place Market in Salisbury. “I thought, ‘Wouldn’t that be nice.’”
She couldn’t believe her eyes as she checked her ticket.
“I looked at my numbers and I said, ‘Noooooooo,’” recalled the lucky winner, who chose the nickname “Bahama Mama” because of her plans for her prize. “Bahama Mama” said she has never gone on a cruise, but that is about to change. She plans to bring her sister with her on a cruise to the islands – and then enjoy an early retirement.
Her big day began with a bang when she scanned the Cash4Life ticket using her phone and the message directed her to take it to a Lottery retailer.
“I called my sister at 6:30 a.m.,” said “Bahama Mama.” Over the phone, the two compared the winning numbers and those on her ticket. She matched all six of the winning numbers, delivering the game’s top prize. Next, her sister drove over to pick up the dubious winner. By 8 a.m., the pair arrived at Winter Place Market in Salisbury and asked a clerk to check the ticket one more time. With the win confirmed, they set off for Baltimore to claim the prize. “Bahama Mama” took the passenger seat so she could phone two other siblings to share her fabulous news!
The lucky Wicomico County resident had the option of receiving $1,000 a day for life paid in annual installments of $365,000 (before taxes) or a one-time cash payment of $7 million (before taxes). “Bahama Mama” chose the annual payments and is also choosing balcony accommodations on her future cruise ship vacation.
Not much will change in “Bahama Mama’s” life despite her newfound wealth. She did joke with her sister that it would be fun to “get the prize in cash and throw it on my bed and bounce on it!” The mother of two added, on a more serious note, “I’m not looking to change my life. I’m looking to live more comfortably.”
“Bahama Mama’s” lucky retailer is a winner as well. For selling the top-prize-winning ticket, Winter Place Market located at 6731 Hobbs Road will receive a $7,500 bonus from the Maryland Lottery.
Cash4Life just passed its fourth anniversary in Maryland. The Maryland Lottery started selling tickets for the multi-state game on Jan. 26, 2016. In the May 2, 2016 drawing, a Frederick woman won Maryland’s first Cash4Life top prize. She claimed anonymously and opted to receive the one-time payment. In the Aug. 7, 2017 drawing, William Brown of Pikesville won the top prize and opted to receive annual payments. Cash4Life tickets also are sold in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Tennessee, Indiana, Georgia and Florida.
Cash4Life first launched in 2014 in New York and New Jersey. The game has awarded 39 top prizes of $1,000 a day for life; and 85 second-tier prizes of $1,000 a week for life. In addition to the three top prizes claimed in Maryland, the state has had two second-tier winners. Cash4Life tickets are $2 and drawings are held at 9 p.m. nightly. Players pick five numbers from 1 to 60 and one Cash Ball number from 1 to 4. To win the top prize, players must match all six numbers. To win the second-tier prize, players match the first five numbers without the Cash Ball.