CLIVE, Iowa (KCAU) — An Iowa couple has won the second-place prize in the ‘Lucky for Life’ lottery game.
According to a press release from the Iowa Lottery, Chuck and Sherry Thomas of Cedar Rapids have been announced as Iowa’s 13th Winner in Lucky for Life.
The release stated that Chuck Thomas received the second prize of $25,000 when he matched five numbers in the Lucky for Life drawing.
According to Chuck Thomas, the win came as a ‘happy accident.’ Standards for number drawings had changed earlier in the year from drawing weekly to daily. So, he stated he had thought that he didn’t know that he’d won the second-place prize in the drawing.
“I was driving past the store and thought, ‘well, maybe I shouldn’t buy another ticket since I already bought two for the week,’” said Chuck Thomas, “I decided I better go in and buy the ticket anyhow.”
When he went into the Casey’s on Edgewood Road in Cedar Rapids, he bought the winning ticket. After the drawing, Chuck Thomas and his wife used the Iowa Lottery app to scan it.
“We were going to wait until the next morning to check the ticket,” said Chuck Thomas, “But I couldn’t sleep so I came back out and said, ‘well, we’ll go ahead and scan it and see what happened,’ and so she scanned the ticket and there it was.”
The release stated that along with Chuck Thomas, his wife was in disbelief too. Their win marks the 13th by Iowa players since the game started in 2016.
“We had just ordered carpet,” said Sherry Thomas, “I’m like, ‘darn, I could’ve got wood floors!’”
The couple stated that they waited to claim the prize until they had a plan in place for what they would do with the prize. The release specified that the minimum guaranteed payout for the two prize levels is 20 years, so they had the option of choosing a lump-sum payout, rather than lifetime annuity payments. The Thomas’s decided to take the lump-sum payment of $390,000 and save and invest the money. They stated they have their eyes on their retirement, but they also might indulge in a hot tub. “Hopefully, this will make our retirement a lot easier,” said Chuck Thomas.
Players in the Lucky for Life choose five numbers from a pool of 48 for the white balls, and 1 out of 18 for the Lucky Ball. Players who match all six numbers in one of the drawings receive a grand prize of $1,000 a day for life. Players who only match the first five numbers in the drawing win the second prize of $25,000 a year for life. There are also other prize levels within the game.
The release stated that the winning numbers from the drawing that the Thomas’s won include 6, 9, 12, 23, 41, and Lucky Ball 8. Casey’s received a $500 bonus from the lottery for selling the winning ticket.