Va. woman wins $1 million while showing friend how to play lottery

Merry Thomas won $1 million in the Virginia Loettry on Monday and said, "I've been freaking out since then!" (Courtesy Virginia Lottery)
Merry Thomas won $1 million in the Virginia Lottery on Monday and said, “I’ve been freaking out since then!” (Courtesy Virginia Lottery)

Merry Thomas had just gotten off working an overnight shift early Monday morning, and she and a co-worker bought lottery tickets at the Giant at 35 Town and Country Road, in Fredericksburg. Thomas won $1 million. (Courtesy Virginia Lottery)

(1/2)
Merry Thomas won $1 million in the Virginia Loettry on Monday and said, "I've been freaking out since then!" (Courtesy Virginia Lottery)

WASHINGTON — They say those who can, do, and those who can’t, teach, but a Fredericksburg, Virginia, woman would beg to differ.

Merry Thomas had just gotten off working an overnight shift early Monday morning, and she and a co-worker bought lottery tickets at the Giant at 35 Town and Country Road, in Fredericksburg.

They played the Virginia Lottery’s 20x the Money game, the Virginia Lottery said in a statement. Thomas showed her co-worker how to use the self-service ticket machine, and how to scan her ticket to determine whether it was a winner.

The co-worker won $12; Thomas won $1 million.

“Right in front of my eyes I saw this woman turn into a puddle,” Thomas’ co-worker told the Virginia Lottery when Thomas claimed her prize later Monday. Thomas said, “I’ve been freaking out since then!”

Thomas chose the one-time payout of $630,915 before taxes; the other option was the full $1 million over 30 years. The store will get a $10,000 bonus.

She told the Virginia Lottery that she had no immediate plans for the money, saying, “I just feel so fortunate. … It’s unbelievable!”

Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.


Like WTOP on Facebook and follow @WTOP on Twitter to engage in conversation about this article and others.

© 2017 WTOP. All Rights Reserved.

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up