BURKE COUNTY, N.C. — Third time became the charm for Larry Parks of Valdese, who tried his luck on two $30 scratch-off tickets before buying a third ticket that won him a $1 million prize.
Parks, a maintenance mechanic for the City of Hickory, stopped at Mel’s Superette on Old Lenoir Road in Hickory in early May and bought two $10,000,000 Colossal Cash tickets.
“I decided to go back in and buy one more for some reason,” said Parks. And lucky he did. “I thought I wasn’t looking at it right,” he said. “I just assumed I’d win my money back, you know, $30, and then I saw the $1 million. It’s pretty hard to believe still.”
Parks claimed his prize at lottery headquarters in Raleigh on Wednesday. He had a choice of taking the $1 million as an annuity of $50,000 a year over 20 years, or a lump sum of $600,000. He chose the lump sum and after federal and state tax withholdings, Parks took home $424,509.
“I was just in the right place,” said Parks. “Something told me to go in and buy another one. If I hadn’t, someone else would be sitting where I’m sitting now, so I’m thankful for that.”
Parks plans to use some of his winnings to buy a new home, and then will “just save the rest.”
The $10,000,000 Colossal Cash game launched in August 2018 with four top prizes of $10 million and 16 $1 million prizes. Two $10 million prizes and four $1 million prizes remain to be won.
Ticket sales from scratch-offs make it possible for the lottery to raise more than $700 million per year for education. For details on how $5.2 million raised by the lottery made a difference in Burke County last year, visit www.nclottery.com and click on the “Impact” section.