77-year-old New Yorker wins $79,000 on his birthday with Maryland Lottery ticket

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A lucky New York State man visiting family in Maryland for his birthday gets a huge birthday gift from the Maryland State Lottery. The 77-year-old man won $79,767 playing the FAST PLAY Payday progressive jackpot game.

The big winner says he plays Lottery occasionally and only played the FAST PLAY game because he read an article about another person winning. This is was his first try at the popular game and said he wanted to try it for his birthday.

“I told my wife, ‘I’m going to play that game for my birthday’,” he shared with Lottery Officials.  So, the day before his big day, he dropped into the NSR Mart in Waldorf and purchased the game. He said the cashier knew right away he was a winner.

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“She looked at me with a big smile and said, ‘you won’,” said the big winner. “I looked at the ticket and said, ‘I really did win, didn’t I’?”


The lucky player then immediately signed the back of the ticket and put it in his pocket. He didn’t tell anyone about the win, keeping it a secret until his actual birthday.

“I went to my wife and told her we need to go to the Lottery Headquarters because I won,” he said. “She didn’t believe me until I showed her the ticket and she was tickled to death, just like me.”

The winner’s wife found out how to claim a prize in Maryland and they made an appointment to claim his winnings this week. He and his wife have no immediate plans for his big win.

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The $79,767 is the ninth progressive jackpot won in the game. There are eleven top prizes remaining. The Payday progressive jackpot starts at $40,000 and increases with the sale of each ticket until a jackpot-winner is sold. Jackpot amounts for FAST PLAY progressive jackpot games are updated every 15 minutes on the Lottery’s website, and up-to-the-minute figures are printed on each ticket.

The lucky Lottery retailer is also a winner. The NSR Mart located at 10195 Berry Road in Waldorf earns a $797.67 bonus from the Lottery which is 1% of the jackpot prize won.

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