Lottery Player's First Win Is A Big One

Mark Bennett of Eugene hadn’t even won so much as free ticket while playing Oregon’s Game Megabucks – until last week when his monthly ticket purchase was worth $3.2 million.

“I like the game, but I had never won anything,” Bennett said. “I always get the 26 draws, then put the ticket away until it is up and get another one.” Players can purchase Oregon’s Game Megabucks tickets for up to 26 draw dates.

Bennett said he purchased a ticket in April from the Jasper’s on Coburg Road in Eugene, and put it away, until recently when he couldn’t sleep. Officials from Jasper’s said it was their first big win at that location.

"To hear one of our guests won the Megabucks jackpot was incredible news!” said Tezra Kong, Director of Operations for Jasper’s. “This will be something our team will be talking about for years to come. We are very excited for our lucky guest, and his good fortune. We look forward to sharing some of the seller's bonus with the team that provided the exceptional guest service at Sheldon Jasper's."

For selling the winning ticket Jasper’s will receive a 1-percent selling bonus, $32,000.

Bennett took the opportunity to bring the ticket to the Oregon Lottery for validation before he claimed his prize. A little-used option allows players to bring in a winning jackpot ticket to Lottery headquarters to have the ticket validated. The Oregon Lottery will then hold the winning ticket up to 60 days while the winner determines to the best option for them to claim the jackpot.

A few days later Bennett came back to the Lottery office after talking with his accountant. He took the bulk sum payment of $1.6 million. After taxes he took home $1.08 million.

“I am going to use the money to set up education funds for my grandchildren,” Bennett said.

During the 2015-17 biennium, more than $50 million in Oregon Lottery proceeds were directed to economic development, parks, education and watershed enhancement in Lane County, where Bennett lives and purchased the ticket. Since 1985, Oregon Lottery players have won more than $38 billion in prizes.

Source: Oregon Lottery

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