2009-04-27 10:46:20.25

Columbia Man Almost Tosses $10,000 Ticket

Story Photo audio icon "Always double check" was the advice given by the latest Missouri Lottery "$500,000 Cash Spectacular" Scratchers winner and for good reason.  According to Matthew McKinney, 21, of Columbia, he felt an inclination to buy that particular game before his shift began at Midway Auto and Truck Plaza, 6401 W. U.S. Highway 40 in Columbia, but he nearly missed out on his windfall.

At first glance, McKinney didn’t realize he was holding a winning ticket.  In fact, the first-time Lottery winner said he "about threw it (ticket) in the trash," because he didn’t think he had won anything.

Luckily, McKinney asked for a second opinion before tossing a ticket worth $10,000. 

"I thought, ’Let me look at it again,’" he revealed.  "Sure enough, I had another guy look at it, and he said, ’Yep that’s what it says.’"

McKinney decided to share the news with his girlfriend via a 6 a.m. phone call, but she didn’t believe what she was hearing, and she went back to sleep.

When asked about plans for the prize money, McKinney had one thing in mind – a vehicle.

"I really need a new car," he began.  "I have an ’87 Camry with 277,000 miles."

"$500,000 Cash Spectacular," a $10 game with a top prize of $500,000, officially began on March 28.  To date, the game has three top prizes, as well as thousands of $10-$20,000 prizes, remaining in play.

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