A Winston-Salem woman has won the state lottery’s top prize.
Damian Zepponi bought three $2 Quick Pick tickets at the Food Lion grocery on Yadkinville Road last Thursday, the day of the drawing, the N.C. Education Lottery said in a news release.
Zepponi’s second ticket matched all six winning numbers, beating odds of one in 30.8 million, lottery officials said. The contest is part of the lottery’s $1,000 a day for life prize.
Zepponi, 47, said she discovered her good fortune the following day when she checked her tickets.
“I couldn’t do anything,” Zepponi said, “but sit and cry and be amazed.”
Lottery officials give winners of the Lucky for Life top prize two options. They can receive an annual payment of $365,000 a year for the rest of the winner’s life or take a lump sum of $5.7 million.
Zepponi spoke to a financial adviser before she decided to take the lump-sum payment, lottery officials said. After federal and state taxes were withheld, Zepponi collected $4,068,127.
Zepponi said she planned to save and invest the money and live off those investments. She said she would use some of the money to start a ministry to help people.
And Zepponi wants to take a family vacation with her three children and four grandchildren.
Zepponi is the third person in North Carolina to win the game’s top prize, lottery officials said. Twenty-five players have won the game’s second prize of $25,000 a year for life.