The old saying that good things come to those who wait proved true Friday when Bertilia Devine, a retired accountant, came forward to claim her $7 million SuperLotto Plus prize.
With ballyhoo galore, the winning ticket for the Dec. 30 drawing was regaled at Nordahl Liquor, the store that sold it. However, there the story seemed to end as no one came forward.
Mystery surrounded the owner of the golden ticket, and that mystery was only partially solved when state lottery officials announced the winner Devine. She had six months to claim the prize, but good for her, did it in four. Otherwise, all the loot would have gone to the state school general fund, and, heaven forbid, helped kids learn more.
Devine refused to make herself available for questions. That was her right under law, but her disclosure also elicited a related remark. “I won $50,000 on Fantasy 5 many years ago,” lottery officials quoted her as saying.
Where does she live? What does she do? The mystery continues. Fairly rare in today’s age of social media and too much information, Devine appeared to have zero online presence. Searches for information about her yielded only the results that she came forward to claim her prize.
Coincidence, luck, or something more, any way the bouncing lotto balls drop, good fortune came Devine’s way. Ever the accountant, albeit retired, Devine said she waited to collect her pot of gold so she could get her financial affairs in order, according to lottery officials, who added that she said she hadn’t decided exactly what her plans were for the money.
Bought for the princely sum of $1, Devine’s winning numbers, should one consider the possibility of lotto lightning striking twice, were 3-4-6-25-26 and Mega number 22.
While not quite in the million dollar club, Nordahl Liquor, one of 22,000 statewide lottery retailers, got a little taste for its winning ticket participation. The store receives a $35,000 bonus for the sale. The retailer bonus comes from a separate fund and isn’t subtracted from Devine’s prize, lottery officials said.
“I’m excited and happy,” Nordahl Liquor manager Steve Kaspolis said. But the Devine one? Nobody’s business, apparently.
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