A Sterling, Massachusetts couple has 61.4 million reasons to celebrate the New Year after stepping forward today and claiming their share of a $122.9 million lottery jackpot won in December.
Maureen and Stephen Hinckley's Powerball ticket matched all five numbers plus the Power Ball (1-10-13-18-19, Power Ball 27) selected in the Saturday, December 11, 2013 drawing to win the multi-state game's jackpot. David and Erica Harrig of Gretna, Nebraska also played a ticket in that drawing bearing the same six number combination to split the $122.9 million top prize evenly with the Hinckleys.
Maureen Hinckley, who is an avid lottery player, stated that she was shocked and in disbelief upon opening the local newspaper on the morning of December 12th and seeing her "regular numbers" ? a combination of her family members' birthdays ? in print. The 58-year old homemaker asked her family to confirm that what she saw was true before calling her husband Stephen, 61, at work. The couple kept quiet with the news of their win, only informing a select few, while they sought the advice of a lawyer to best plan for the cash windfall was to come their way.
The Hinckleys elected to receive the $34,182,986 cash option on the $64,461,010 jackpot prize, which after state and federal taxes withholdings will amount to $23,928,090.20. It takes approximately two weeks to process the jackpot win, so the couple walked away today with an oversized ceremonial check and a bit more time to think about what they will do with the winnings.
The couple has been married for 38 years and have four adult children, as well as four grandchildren. They have lived in Sterling for 28 years, plan to stay in the town, and do not foresee the jackpot prize impacting their lifestyle too much.
"We have always wanted to visit the National Parks and travel more, so that will likely be something we'll do once this has all settled in," said Maureen. "And my husband planned on retiring in the next few years, so that will be happening much sooner now."
Maureen played the winning ticket at Appletown Market located at 9 Main Street in Sterling, where she stops every Saturday morning to buy lottery tickets. The store owner, Chirag Patel, also benefitted from the Hinckleys' jackpot win after receiving a $50,000 commission -- the highest retailer commission paid by the Massachusetts Lottery -- for selling the winning ticket.
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