Friday, the 13th of June, was a lucky day for Michigan’s newest multi-millionaire, Kelsey Zachow, 24, of Port Huron.
That’s when Zachow bought a Mega Millions ticket at Sonny’s Mart in Mount Clemens, her hometown, the Detroit Free Press reports. She tucked it in her purse and went about her life for the next 11 days.
Then, when she checked the ticket, the clerk at the store told her, “You won big.”
She didn’t know how big, and thought the clerk was mistaken.
The line behind her was long, so she decided to look up the numbers on the Michigan Lottery web site form her car WXYZ, Channel 7, reports.
And then: boom!
“That’s when I realized I had won the jackpot and could barely breathe,” she said at a news conference at Michigan Lottery headquarters.
She rushed home, and greeted her boyfriend of three years, Billy Bartlett, with the surprising news:
“I was screaming, ‘I won! I won!’ at the top of my lungs and he came running into the room,” Zachow said. “I was yelling so much that he thought I had been in a car accident or hit someone on my way home. I told him I had a $66 million ticket in my hand and he didn’t believe me. He finally looked at the ticket and couldn’t believe his eyes.”
Bartlett, who was with Zachow at a news conference in Sterling Heights Thursday, said his “jaw dropped to the floor” when he realized she had won the jackpot.
Zachow, a twice-weekly Michigan Lottery player, juggled two part-time jobs to make ends meet – one as a medical assistant for Henry Ford Health System and another as a bartender. Bartlett has been laid off from his construction job for about a year.
She plans to take a lump sum payment, which amounts to about $27 million after taxes.
She said that she plans to use some of the money to establish college funds for her and her boyfriend’s two young children and for her 2-year-old brother.
She’ll also buy a dream house in the St. Clair County area, take some trips and go on a shopping spree. A sports utility vehicle, possible a Jeep, and an electric blue Mustang GT convertible with dual exhaust and leather seats are on her list.
Sonny’s Mart gets a $50,000 bonus commission for selling the winning ticket.
Lottery officials said $66 million was the largest jackpot ever won by a Michigan Lottery player on Friday the 13th.
Zachow said she spent $5 twice a week playing the Lottery for the past five years. The most she’s ever won was a $50 prize. She potentially invested $10,000 for her $66 million windfall..