Lottery club forms after woman’s husband dies. Then she buys winning ticket at her bar

After a Michigan woman’s husband died, she and another person formed a lottery club.

The two-person club decided on a “special code word” they’d use if they ever won a prize, according to a Nov. 16 news release.

In September, those two members got to use their code word for the first time.

Kristi Sadler, the CCKMA club representative, told lottery officials she bought a Powerball ticket for the Sept. 11 drawing from her own bar.

“The morning after the drawing, I got a call that my business had sold a $1 million winner and I just had a feeling it was our ticket,” Sadler recently told lottery officials.

Her feeling was correct.

With numbers 09-25-27-53-66, she had matched the five white balls during the drawing — and won a $1 million prize, according to the release.

“After I checked the ticket, I had to call the other club member, who was on vacation out of the country, to let him know we had won,” Sadler recalled. “We had always joked that we’d use a special code word if we won, so when he answered and told me he had to pay extra for overseas calls, I said the code word and I told him he wasn’t going to have to worry about the bill!”

The club members plan to invest the money in their retirement accounts, officials said.

The winning ticket was sold at Kristi’s Pour House in Hart, about 80 miles northwest of Grand Rapids.

In Michigan, groups of two or more people can form lottery clubs to purchase games together. If a club wins, the prize is divided among members.

Many people can gamble or play games of chance without harm. However, for some, gambling is an addiction that can ruin lives and families.

If you or a loved one shows signs of gambling addiction, you can seek help by calling the national gambling hotline at 1-800-522-4700 or visiting the National Council on Problem Gambling website.

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