The year 2021 started with a bang for the Mega Millions lottery. The beloved American lottery has been making the headlines again with its $1-Billion-dollar jackpot. Ticket sales for the draw of January 22nd sky rocketed. All lottery fans in the world had their eyes set on the mouth-watering top prize. A ticket holder in Michigan hit the jackpot, literally!
How did Mega Millions jackpot get to such amazing heights?
Earlier in 2020, as the pandemic was getting started, both Powerball and Mega Millions were announcing changes, including lower starting jackpots and smaller rollover increases. After such pessimistic news, nobody was expecting new records to be set. Yet, the lottery world managed to surprise all of us once again.
After a rollover streak of 37 draws, the second-largest jackpot in the history of Mega Millions was won in the night of January 22nd 2021. The final jackpot value was of $1.05 billion ($776.6 million cash), updated to reflect strong sales. The winning numbers for the draw were 4-26-42-50-60 and a Mega Ball number of 24.
Is this the biggest Mega Millions jackpot ever awarded?
No, but it is one of the biggest Mega Millions jackpots. To be more precise, the enormous jackpot delivered on January 22nd is the second largest prize in the entire Mega Millions history, below only another billion-dollar jackpot, the incredible $1.537 billion won in South Carolina on October 23, 2018, which is still the world’s largest lottery prize ever awarded on a single ticket.
Were there other Mega Millions jackpot winners from Michigan?
Michigan being one of the original founding members of Mega Millions, the state’s history with this multi-state lottery is long and dotted with amazing wins. This is the 18th Mega Millions jackpot won in Michigan over the years. Until January 22nd’s big win, the largest lottery prize ever won by a Michigan resident was a $337 million Powerball jackpot scooped by Donald Lawson, of Lapeer on August 15th 2012. The largest Mega Millions prize ever won in the state previous to January 22nd 2021 was worth $208 million and it went to A Port Huron couple, Ralph and Mary Stebbins, after the draw of April 22nd 2005.
Who is the luck $1 Billion-dollar winner?
The identity of the four winners sharing the $1 billion jackpot remains unknown. Although anonymity is not an option in the state of Michigan, the four decided to claim their prize as a lottery club. So, their name will remain in the Mega Millions lottery history as Wolverine FLL Club.
Soon after the lucky draw took place, it has been hotly rumored on social media that a group of teachers won the $1 billion Mega Millions jackpot. However, the Michigan Lottery officials were unable to confirm the rumors and the principal at Novi Woods Elementary School, David Ascher, shot down these rumours by saying everyone showed up for work. While the ticket purchase location at the Kroger, 47650 Grand River in Novi remains a valid detail, we will most probably never know if the Wolverine FLL Club is a group of teachers or not.
The only details released by the Michigan Lottery officials were that the four-members club were represented by a lawyer in their prize-claiming process and chose the immediate lump sum option. After taxes, the $776 million payment was reduced to about $557 million.
“This kind of money will impact the families of our club members for generations to come. We plan to stay humble and pay it forward through charitable giving in southeast Michigan,” attorney Kurt Panouses said on behalf of the winners. Kroger said it would donate its $50,000 commission to the Food Bank Council of Michigan.
So, what are you waiting for? Just put in a ticket! You could be the next one to make the headlines as a jackpot winner.