Luck of the Irish

March the 17th is a well known day not only in Ireland but all over the world. It is of course St.Patrick’s day. A day that the Irish and those with Irish ancestry celebrate with music, dance a good dose of “craic” (Gaelic for “fun”) and of course a bit of the “black stuff” (Guinness Stout).

So perhaps it was the luck of the Irish or a lucky Irish leprechaun that was smiling on the suburb of Wood Dale in Chicago on 17th March 2012. At the time and place a winning jackpot ticket worth $1 million was sold.

The winning ticket was from the Millionaire Raffle, a special draw where only 500,000 $20 tickets are created with four winning jackpot amongst them. , Each of the winning tickets is worth $1 million before tax.

Lottery officials were preparing to pass the $1,000,000 prize unto charity just three days before this St. Patrick’s day – the last day for claiming the prize when the winner finally came forward.

Winner Claims Prize

The cash prize, that has a one year expiration date from the time of purchase, was set to expire at midnight on Sunday March 17th 2013. So while the Irish were celebrating some person would either have plenty to celebrate with them, whether Irish or not, or miss out on a $300,000 prize.

It seems that the winners may have been sitting on the ticket deliberately as they hired an attorney to present the lottery ticket and claim the win. The only information given by the attorney was that there were three winners all sharing the prize.

The owner of the gas station that sold the winning ticket had said that there was a lot of buzz and excitement generated by his customers with everyone wondering who could have bought the ticket. Jim Batson said the media coverage of the unclaimed was a great boost to his business with patrons wanting to buy tickets hoping his gas station was lucky.

The odds of landing one of the 4 winning tickets are 1 in 125,000. Although this sounds like a lot you must take into consideration that a typical lottery has odds of 14 million to 1!

The other 3 tickets, each also worth 1 million dollars, were claimed soon after the draw. Surprisingly one of those tickets was actually bought within walking distance from Wood Dale the gas station.

Unclaimed Prizes

Although all the lucky winners got their St. Patrick’s Day prize money last year a total of $32,400,000.00 went unclaimed in the Illinois lottery.

The biggest prize that had no claimant was worth a staggering 14 million dollars!

If the St. Patrick’s Day trio had no claimed their prize this winning ticket, worth $700,000.00 after tax, would have been just another 5-figure unclaimed prize.



Next: 2 Amazing Win in 1

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