33-Year-Old Man Celebrating Second Wedding Anniversary Wins $100K Lottery

·2-min read
Kenneth Smith
Kenneth Smith

NC Education Lottery Kenneth Smith accepting his big win

One North Carolina couple received an anniversary gift that likely won't be topped anytime soon.

Kenneth Smith and his wife were celebrating their second wedding anniversary at a beach with loved ones when one of Smith's friends suggested he buy a $100 Million Mega Cash ticket from Calabash Food and Fuel, according to the NC Education Lottery.

After buying the scratcher ticket, Smith discovered he had won $100,000.

"We wouldn't have known about it if it hadn't been for him," Smith said of his pal, per the lottery. "He was so excited that the store he picked out for us produced a winner for our group."

Smith said he took everyone in their group to breakfast that morning before collecting his prize at the lottery headquarters on Friday. After taxes, Smith and his wife were able to net $71,016 thanks to the lucky ticket, per lottery officials.

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"I've always fantasized about winning a big prize in the lottery," Smith, who works in real estate, told the lottery.

As for what's next, Smith said he'd like to use the winnings on home renovations, including building a fence for the couple's 9-week-old dachshund puppy.

The NC Education Lottery said two $2 million prizes and four $100,000 prizes from the $100 Million Mega Cash game remain unclaimed.

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The win comes after an Illinois resident won $1.3 billion in the Mega Millions jackpot last month.

The ticket was purchased at a gas station in Des Plaines, about 20 miles outside Chicago, according to the Illinois Lottery.

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The July 29 winning ticket matched all six numbers — white balls 13, 36, 45, 47 and 67 — plus the gold Mega Ball 14.

This jackpot is the second largest in the 20-year history of the lottery. In 2018, $1.5 billion was won in South Carolina.