The week of Feb. 27 was an eventful one for Kathy Lamkemeyer, complete with a celebration of her 56th birthday, announcing her retirement, making investment plans for her family’s future, and claiming a $1.3 million Missouri Lottery jackpot. Not exactly in that order, though.
“I’ve been anxious all week, I’ll tell you that,” said Lamkemeyer, looking back on the whirlwind week while claiming her prize on March 3.
The Nixa resident was the only Missouri Lottery player who correctly matched all six numbers drawn – 1, 4, 6, 9, 16 and 43 – in the Feb. 25 Lotto drawing.
“I was just on my way home from work when I popped in the gas station and just decided to buy a couple dollars’ worth,” said Lamkemeyer, adding that she likes to play Powerball and Lotto sporadically.
The new millionaire recalled the moment she realized she had won the jackpot, detailing a function through her cable provider that allows customers to find winning numbers for Lottery Draw Games.
“You select the state, the game you played and pull (the numbers) up that way. It was about 7 a.m., and I had my glasses on, but I wasn’t sure if I was reading the numbers correctly,” said Lamkemeyer. “So I ran and told my daughter I thought I won and to come check the numbers.”
Once she realized she was the owner of a $1.3 million Lottery ticket, Lamkemeyer signed the back of the ticket and spent the next week making plans for her family’s future.
“I had to make some financial decisions. I work, so I had to notify my employer that I would be retiring,” said Lamkemeyer, who works in the insurance industry. “There were a lot of factors to consider. My goal was to retire eventually, and it just happens to be sooner because of this.”
In addition to retiring early, Lamkemeyer made other long-term plans for her newly found fortune, including paying off debt and making investments, but she does have one immediate purchase in mind.
“I’m getting a zero-turn lawnmower. I live on three acres and am in need of an upgrade,” she said.
Lamkemeyer chose the annuity payment option, which will pay her the $1.3 million prize in 25 annual payments. She purchased her winning ticket from Signal Food Store, 402 W. Mount Vernon St. in Nixa, and used Quick Pick to have her numbers randomly selected. For selling the winning jackpot ticket, Signal Food Store received a bonus check for $5,000.
Lamkemeyer is the 463rd Missouri Lottery-made millionaire and the winner of the 241st Lotto jackpot. Lotto is a twice-weekly Draw Game with jackpots that start at $1 million and have reached as high as $19 million. A $3.5 million Lotto jackpot sold in Hermann for the Nov. 12, 2016, drawing remains unclaimed. If not claimed by the May 11 expiration date, it would become the second Lotto jackpot to go unclaimed in the Draw Game’s 30-year history.