‘Hootin’ and hollerin’.’ Couple breaks out in celebration over $1 million lottery win

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N.C. Education Lottery

A lottery player didn’t wait to check her lucky ticket — leading to a loud celebration at a North Carolina convenience store.

“I think everybody in the surrounding area knew we won,” $1 million prize winner Jo Anne Brown told the N.C. Education Lottery. “We were hootin’ and hollerin’ for sure.”

Among those celebrating the big prize was Brown’s husband, Kerry.

“Some things are just meant to be,” he said March 27 in a news release. “We all did a lot of happy crying.”

The couple couldn’t contain themselves after a trip to Fast Phil’s convenience store in Harmony, roughly 55 miles north of Charlotte. That’s where Brown spent $10 on a ticket for the Jumbo Bucks scratch-off game, officials said.

Brown was still in the store when she scratched her ticket and learned it was worth $1 million.

“We just kept screaming, ‘We are millionaires,’” Brown told the N.C. Education Lottery. “It was like a dream.”

Brown, an Iredell County resident, decided to take her prize in a lump sum of $600,000. She kept $427,503 after taxes, officials said.

Now, Brown and her husband might build a fishing pond for their grandchildren. In addition to helping family, the winner told lottery officials the extra cash could ease her retirement plans.

“This money will help make that happen,” Brown said in the news release. “It’s a life-changing event for us.”

It’s not the first time a lottery win has caused a celebration to break out inside a North Carolina store. Recently, a jackpot prize sent a man jumping up and down while another left a cashier hugging a lucky player, McClatchy News reported.

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