Ismael Jimenez of Broadway says his parents have always looked out for him and after winning a $200,000 lottery prize it is his time to take care of them.

“I’m going to give it to my parents,” said Jimenez. “They have been through a lot. I feel like they deserve it. They can pay off their house, fix up their cars, and take care of bills they might have.”

Jimenez, a warehouse worker, said winning the lottery felt like “a dream.”

The dream started Friday when Jimenez got off work in Sanford, stopped to get gas at the Save More on South Horner Boulevard, and decided to also try his luck on a $5 Mega Bucks ticket.

“I thought it was too good to be true,” he recalled of first seeing the prize.

So, Jimenez said he decided to go to bed and see if his ticket still had a prize on it in the morning. He woke up on Saturday, saw the prize still on his ticket, and asked his parents to check and confirm the win. They did.

“I felt blessed,” Jimenez said.

He claimed his prize Tuesday at lottery headquarters in Raleigh and took home $141,501 after required federal and state tax withholdings.

The Mega Bucks game launched in January with 10 top prizes of $200,000. One top prize remains to be claimed.

Ticket sales from scratch-off games make it possible for the lottery to raise more than $900 million a year for education.

A $10 million grant, using money raised by the lottery, will help Harnett County build the new Northwest Harnett Elementary School. A groundbreaking ceremony for the new school was held on Wednesday. For details on other ways Harnett County benefits from lottery funds, visit and click on the “Impact” section.