Winning Mega Millions Ticket Sold in Simpsonville, South Carolina
The South Carolina Lottery has confirmed that the winning ticket for Tuesday’s $1.53 billion Mega Millions draw was sold at a small store just outside Simpsonville in a rural part of the state. The KC Mart #7 at 303 Lee Vaughn Road has now been thrust into the spotlight as fellow lottery players and news crews wait to find out more about the record winner.
It was announced shortly after the draw that there had only been one winner of the biggest Mega Millions prize of all time. They matched the numbers 5, 28, 62, 65 and 70, plus Mega Ball 5, to claim the largest lottery prize won on a single ticket anywhere in the world.
‘Can’t Even Count That Number’
The retailer that sold the all-important entry has now been named, and C.J. Patel has admitted that he could not believe it when he was phoned by lottery officials at 5am on Wednesday morning to say that his KC Mart store had produced the winner. “I can’t even count that number,” he said.
Patel’s store will now receive a $50,000 bonus, which will work out at around $30,000 after taxes. He will split the money with his colleagues and is hoping the big win will bring more customers to the store.
Simpsonville, a small city of around 22,000 close to Greenville in upstate South Carolina, has already become a hub of media activity since Tuesday’s draw, with journalists descending on the area and locals expressing their excitement. Mayor Janice Curtis enthused: “We are such a warm community, if someone needs something, we are there. If someone needs celebrating, and this is certainly an occasion to celebrate, we are there.”
Winner Could Stay Anonymous
The winner has 180 days to come forward and claim their prize, and the South Carolina Lottery has been quick to offer advice on what they should do. “The winner should sign the back of the ticket, put it in a safe location, seek financial or legal advice from a trusted source, and call the Lottery,” said an official press release.
South Carolina is one of the few states where winners are not compelled to go public, and the executive director of the lottery, Hogan Brown, is pleased that the ticket holder will be able to make their own choice. He told CBS This Morning: “It’s very intrusive what happens, and someone could be hurt, someone could be threatened ... they can decide to expose themselves to publicity if they want to.”
Tuesday’s big win fell just short of the record for any lottery prize, which was set back in January 2016 when three Powerball players split $1.58 billion. Powerball is currently back up to $750 million and could be about to top $1 billion once again, if you would like to choose numbers online or visit an authorised retailer.