July 17, 2012
Stotts City Teacher Banks $50,000 Prize on Summer Break
While other teachers are relaxing during summer break, elementary school teacher James Kleine is testing his grammar skills – and passing. The 25-year-old Stotts City man spelled his way to a $50,000 top prize on a Missouri Lottery “Bonus Word Crossword” Scratchers ticket on July 11.
The first-time Lottery winner said the game “caught my eye” while grocery shopping at Dillons, 2843 E. Sunshine St., in Springfield.
“I scratched off the ticket at my apartment with my roommates,” Kleine began. “Nobody could believe it.”
After calls to his parents and girlfriend, Kleine secured the ticket until he could claim his prize at a Lottery office the following day.
“I didn’t sleep much that night,” he revealed over laughter.
As for plans for the windfall, Kleine intends to do something he didn’t expect to be able to do so soon – “pay off my student loans!”
“Bonus Word Crossword
” is a $3 game that officially started on Jan. 5.