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$667,142 WIN A FAMILY AFFAIR Family group 1st of 5 to claim Powerball Bonus Pool Prize
Tuesday, February 21, 2006
Media Contact:  Kym Gerlock
(615) 324-6556 Office
(615) 604-2827 Mobile
 
Left to right: Brian McMahan, wife Amber McMahan, Betty Russell, TEL CEO & President Rebecca Paul, Angie Thacker, Brian Thacker, Michael Vann

NASHVILLE - Winning second place—or in this case, second prize—is “close enough” for a family from Oliver Springs, in east Tennessee. The group, officially known as the “Lucky 4,” was the first of five Tennessee Powerball winners to claim a prize that was increased by $467,142 due to a Bonus Prize Pool set in motion by the record-breaking jackpot.

The group, made up of the four “official” ticket purchasers and their extended family, claimed its winnings today at the Tennessee Lottery’s Nashville headquarters.

“I couldn’t speak,” said Angie Thacker, a homemaker from Oliver Springs. “We didn’t find out until the next morning about the additional money … it was exciting enough anyway, but after that … I just couldn’t speak.”

Four of the family members decided to pool some cash and purchase more than their usual share of Powerball tickets for the $365 million jackpot. They are: Angie’s husband, Brian Thacker, a pig farmer; their daughter Amber McMahan, a heavy-equipment operator; Brian’s brother Michael Vann, an employee at Dent Wizard; and Betty Russell, a homemaker who is Angie’s sister.

“People laughed at us and said we wouldn’t win a dime,” said Michael. “Looking back, it’s funny for me, and not for them!”

What will they do with their winnings? Pay off bills, medical expenses, take a shopping spree and invest for their children’s futures. “Also, I’d like to become a country singer in Nashville,” joked Michael. “And I’ll represent him,” added Brian.

The prize for matching the five white balls is typically $200,000. When a Powerball jackpot record is broken, as with the amount for the past Saturday’s drawing, a Bonus Prize Pool is created to “Share the Winnings” among the second-tier prize level. Five Tennessee players will enjoy the results of this feature, while a Manchester player will collect $1,267,142 due to choosing the Power Play option. The other second tier tickets were purchased in Christiana, Jackson and Winchester. No additional information is available about the winners until they claim their prize.

The Tennessee Lottery began selling tickets on January 20, 2004. As of Dec. 31, 2005, the Lottery has raised more than $487 million to fund specific education programs, including college scholarships, pre-kindergarten and after-school programs. For more information, please visit www.tnlottery.com. For information about Lottery-funded scholarships, visit www.collegepaystn.com.

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