Maryland Mega Millions ticket shared by three public school workers
Lottery officials announced Tuesday that the winning Mega Millions ticket sold in Maryland was purchased by three public school workers, all of whom have multiple jobs.
The winners, who referred to themselves as "The Three Amigos," arrived at Lottery headquarters with their financial advisor and chose the cash option of $158 million, according to a press release. After taxes, the winners will share $105 million, taking home just under $35 million each.
Maryland Lottery Director Stephen Martino says the winners are longtime friends, described as a woman in her 20’s, a man in his 40’s and another woman in her 50’s. Each of them put in $20 to buy 60 tickets at three different locations, Martino said.
The winners are described as cheerful, humble and a little overwhelmed by the enormity of the situation. One told officials that she had recently made a quiet prayer for help paying the bills.
The trio plans to invest their winnings, but they have a few dreams, too: The man told lottery officials that he planned to help his children with college expenses, pay off his house and buy his sister a house. One woman planned to go backpacking through Europe with her brother and the other plans to tour Italy's wine country.
The youngest of the group held onto the tickets and checked them immediately following the drawing. "I had all 60 tickets spread across my floor," she said. "Once I realized one was a winner, I called my two friends right away."
Afterwards, they all met up and each signed a copy of the ticket. They then contacted a financial advisor.
The three winners work in Maryland's public school system as an elementary school teacher, a special education teacher and an administrative worker, Martino said. Each of them work multiple jobs and plan to continue to work for now.
When asked what they plan to do with their winnings, their answers varied: "I'm going to help my children with their college expenses, pay off my house and buy a house for my sister," said one man.
"I plan on backpacking through Europe with my brother," said one women.
"I'm going to go to Italy's wine country," another woman chimed in. "Most importantly," she added, "we're going to be careful with how the money is spent. I watched coverage of the jackpot win on television all week, just so I could listen to the financial advice the professionals were offering."
The winners have chosen to remain anonymous as Maryland does not require lottery winners to be identified.
The winning ticket, sold at a Baltimore County 7-Eleven, matched all six numbers: 2-4-23-38-46 and the Mega Ball, 23.
The jackpot was the biggest in Mega Millions history, and the three winning tickets - one in Maryland, Illinois and Kansas - are worth $218 million each. before taxes. The Kansas' winner also decided to remain anonymous.
The winner of the Illinois ticket still has not come forward.
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