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Hurricane Florence victim to repair home with $150,000 lottery prize

November 6, 2018 Posted by NC Lottery at 2:52 PM

A $150,000 lottery prize will let Shirley Tolson of Shannon repair the damage Hurricane Florence caused to her home.

“It’s a blessing,” Tolson said. “The wind and rain damaged the roof and chimney. We were also hit by Hurricane Matthew a couple of years ago, so it’s wonderful to have this.”

The tax accountant’s good fortune happened Monday when she stopped by Merritt’s Jewelry and Pawn on East Fourth Avenue in Red Springs and bought a Holiday Cash scratch-off ticket.

“I rarely play the lottery,” Tolson said. “But I saw the new ticket and decided to get one.”

She scratched the $5 ticket Tuesday morning.

“I had to show my daughter to make sure I wasn’t seeing things,” Tolson said. “I asked her, ‘Is this what I think it is?’ she looked at it and said, ‘Yes momma it is.’”

Tolson immediately drove to lottery headquarters in Raleigh to claim her prize. She started dancing and singing when she got her check.

“Woooh!” Tolson exclaimed. “If ever there was a reason to dance, this is it.”   

After required state and federal tax withholdings, she took home $105,753.

Holiday Cash launched this month with four top prizes of $150,000. Tolson is the first player to claim a top prize. Holiday Cash is a first of its kind scratch-off ticket for N.C. lottery players. It’s printed on plastic and the non-printed area is transparent. 

 All holiday scratch-off tickets can be entered into one of two second-chance drawings for a chance to win $50,000. The deadline to enter the first drawing is Nov. 30.


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11/07/2018 06:44 - Janette B.

Congrat’s!! I’m happy you’ll be able to cover your expenses related to the hurricane. Merry Christmas to you and your family.

11/07/2018 12:01 - Gary C.

Congratulations on the win!!! Sometimes listening to that inner voice pays off. This was right on time for the hurricane repairs.

11/06/2018 07:42 - Nicholas S.

Congrats. Just not sure I believe all these winners who say they "rarely play" though.

11/06/2018 04:41 - JIM B.

Very nice of NCEL to place that ticket in that region hit so hard by the hurricane so soon. Nice pr move to say the least. Won't be expecting another 150,000 to show up any time soon. Please don't answer with the we don't know where they are comment as that's not one subject you do want to debate. Just saying-a very kind gesture indeed! NC Lottery
We can't take any of the credit on that, Jim! Lottery ticket distribution is a controlled and secure process and the tickets are sent out at random. The lottery does not know where the winning tickets are until they are claimed. It's just a matter of having a little good luck!

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