2007-02-28 15:48:39.587

Knob Noster Man Wins $77,000 Prize Instantly

Story Photo A $5 purchase led to a "life-changing event" for a Knob Noster man when he won $77,000 with a Missouri Lottery Scratchers ticket. Barry Uptegrove, 37, purchased his winning $5 "Ruby Red 7’s" Scratchers ticket on Feb. 24 when he stopped for a cup of coffee at Casey’s, 709 W. McPherson St. in Knob Noster. Uptegrove, an independent carpenter, said he took his ticket home and scratched it off. "I didn’t believe it," Uptegrove said. "My kids were looking over my shoulder, and it was my son who said, ’Dad, you won!’" Uptegrove said his aunt had won $1,000 playing "Ruby Red 7’s" the week before and that was what inspired him to buy a $5 ticket. "I don’t normally buy more than a $1 ticket," Uptegrove said. "I called my uncle after I scratched my ticket off, because I knew he would know what a winning ticket looked like. I still can’t believe it." Uptegrove said he plans to use his winnings to begin building a home. He said he would also like to purchase a big-screen television for that new home and put money back for his three children. "This is a life-changing event for me," he said. "Ruby Red 7’s" is a $5 game that officially began on Sept. 14, 2006.

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