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Press Releases

2009 Press Releases

August 25, 2009

DELAWARE LOTTERY PLAYER CLAIMS $16.6M JACKPOT WITH HOT LOTTO® WIN. Pennsylvania resident become Delaware's first-ever Hot Lotto jackpot winner

Dover, DE --A lucky Delaware Lottery player and his wife came forward yesterday to claim the first HOT LOTTO® jackpot in the state's brief history with the game. They picked a terrific time to take home the top prize, as it had grown to $16,690,000 and become the second-largest Hot Lotto jackpot on record. The win stemmed from an Aug. 22 drawing.

Robert Crowther said his wife was fortunate enough to purchase the winning ticket at a gas station convenience store located in Claymont. "It's close to where we live and we often play the lottery in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware," said the 66-year-old retiree. The couple resides in Aston, Pa., and has been in the area for many years. "She only purchased one Hot Lotto ticket, but I guess it was the right one."

"Hot Lotto may be a relatively new offering in the State of Delaware, but we are thrilled the Delaware Lottery was able to award its first Hot Lotto jackpot so quickly," said Wayne Lemons, Director, Delaware Lottery. "The game first went on sale here in January of 2008, but we're sure this big win will only spur interest. We already set an all-time high in terms of Hot Lotto sales during the run. As with all major winners, we advised the Crowthers to seek guidance from certified financial and legal experts. However, we were pleased to hear that Mr. Crowther had already taken those steps by reviewing our published recommendations and identifying his financial advisors before he arrived to claim his prize."

"My wife came home from the store after trying to check it and thought we'd only won $16,000," Crowther remembered. "I took another look at it and was sure that we had all the numbers right but I still didn't know how much it was worth because I didn't know if there had been any other winners in the drawing. It was thrilling to hear that we'd hit for the whole jackpot! My first reaction was: 'No more bills.' I think my wife is still in a state of shock."

Crowther opted to take the jackpot as a lump sum payment of $10,774,362, rather than a deferred annuity. He previously worked at the Chrysler plant in Newark, retiring in 2001 after 30-years on the job.

Among the first people to learn about the good news was the bartender at the local bar the couple owns. "After we told her we figured there was no point in trying to keep the news quiet, so why not just get out there and share the good news with the rest of the world? She's probably told almost everyone already."

For now the couple plans to pay off bills including car payments and their daughter's mortgage. "This is a real life changer," said Crowther. "We're going to buy a house, but I don't think we know what we'll do with the rest of the money just yet."

This was the couple's second significant Delaware Lottery win, as they'd also cashed in for $5,000 in a 1986 drawing.

The winning numbers were 4-6-14-15-22 and the Hot Ball was 17.

The game's jackpot run started March 4 and there were 49 draws in the run. Three local players hit for $10,000 during the run, and two have already stepped forward to claim their winnings. A $10,000 winner from July 1 has yet to claim their prize. The largest Hot Lotto jackpot ever claimed dates from Jan. 13, 2007, when an Iowa winner took home $19.82 million.

The winning ticket was sold at VB Petroleum, which operates as Gulf Express, located at 3310 Philadelphia Pike in Claymont.

The Delaware Lottery reminds players that prizes must be claimed within one year from the date of the drawing.

Hot Lotto tickets are sold in 13 states and the District of Columbia.

Since the start of operations in 1975, the Delaware Lottery has contributed more than $3 billion to the state's General Fund to help finance needed state services that benefit everyone in Delaware. The Lottery offers a variety of games: POWERBALL®, HOT LOTTO®, MULTI-WIN LOTTO, PLAY 3, PLAY 4, and assorted Instant Games. Delaware Lottery game and promotional details are available at delottery.com, at licensed retailers, and from the Lottery's office in Dover.

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