A 53-year-old Clayton woman is Delaware's latest big winner after having a mega win on a MegaHits penny progressive machine at Dover Downs Hotel & Casino early the morning of July 27.
The lucky woman, an information systems manager for the State of Delaware, hit the jackpot while playing "Triple Ruby Riches," winning a grand total of $586,559. As permitted by Delaware Law, the woman chose to remain anonymous.
This is the third jackpot win since the multi-state progressive MegaHits game was first introduced at casinos in Delaware, Rhode Island and West Virginia in July 2011. The first jackpot won was at Delaware Park Casino in October 2012 and paid $1.5 million to one lucky player. The second jackpot won was at Twin River Casino in Rhode Island just one month later and paid $113,409.
"Luck can happen at any time and anywhere," said Delaware Lottery Director Vernon Kirk. "The Delaware Lottery feels lucky to have had so many big winners this year, and especially so many big Delaware winners. It really makes our day to see people win the chance at making some of their biggest dreams come true."
Claiming her prize July 30 at Lottery headquarters in Dover the woman did tell Lottery officials that she always knew someday she'd come into some money. "I always feel lucky about many things in my life," the happy winner said. "I stay positive and tell myself that the next winner is going to be me. My next mission is to win a Lottery drawing!"
Her strategy of positivity seems to be working for her. The woman also revealed to Lottery officials that she had won at the casino once before.
"They were running a $250 'Free Play' promotion throughout the day at Dover Downs with a large cash pay-out winner at the end," she said. "I was just on my way out the door, but thought I'd put $20 more in the machine. That's when I heard them call my name over the loud speaker."
"I hurried up and cashed out from the machine I was playing, then ran up to the lady at the front desk and exclaimed, 'Yay! I just won $250 of Free Play!' She said to me, 'No. You just won $15,000!'"
While a $15,000 win was much to her surprise, the woman said it was no comparison to the astonishment and awe she felt from her win on Saturday.
"I was completely shocked and had tears of joy," she said. "It's very emotional. This win is a life changer."
A regular player at Dover Downs Casino, the lucky winner who typically plays at the casino once or twice a week told Lottery officials she'll continue to do so in the future.
For now, she has big plans for her winnings.
"I'm going to put a significant amount of it away for retirement," she said. "I'll have enough to help out my family and a nice little nest egg to go along with it."