Dane Colby, 47, of Hennepin, bought a Mega Millions ticket last month at Hennepin Food Market, which is a few doors from his home. Dane got up early Saturday morning on March 13 to check the local newspaper for winning numbers from the previous night's drawing. He started shaking when he realized that all the numbers matched the ticket he was holding. Julie, Dane's wife said, "When he first told me, I thought he was kidding, because he had done that to me before."
It was no joke this time as Dane and Julie Colby did, in fact, have the only winning ticket for the March 12 Mega Millions drawing which was worth $20 million.
After confirming the numbers with store owner Anton Dzierzynski, they started the day as previously planned by having breakfast at a local restaurant. While there, they overheard other diners talking about the big win by someone in their town of about 800 people. Though they wanted to keep the news of their win quiet, it didn't take long for everyone around town to realize who had the winning ticket.
Dane Colby is a lifelong resident of Hennepin and works at a local power plant. His wife is a northeast Iowa native who teaches math at Hall High School in Spring Valley. They have two school-age children. The Colbys intend to continue working and invest their winnings. "I want this to be a legacy for my children and hopefully their children," said Dane Colby.
The Colbys will take lump sum option of $12.8 million.
Dzierzynski said lottery sales doubled at the store after word got out about the big ticket. He will receive a $200,000 award, which will be used to upgrade his store to provide a better shopping destination for his customers.
Founded in 1974, the Illinois Lottery is a state agency with annual sales over $2 billion. Since its inception, the Lottery has contributed more than $14 billion to the state Common School Fund to assist K-12 public schools. Proceeds also benefit the Illinois Capital Fund. For more information on the Illinois Lottery please visit our Web site at www.illinoislottery.com.
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