3 Long Islanders among latest $1M lottery winners
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Spending just $1 more won Rodolfo Juarez an extra $1 million in New York State Lottery prize money.
Juarez, 26, of Brentwood, was one of 10 million-dollar prize winners announced by the Lottery on Thursday in Jamaica.
Juarez said in a news release from the agency that he purchased his Powerball tickets for the Nov. 24 drawing and used an extra dollar for the Power Play option, which doubles prize money.
Juarez matched all five numbers drawn for the $325 million jackpot (22-32-37-44-50) but missed the Powerball number (34) for a $1-million prize; the Power Play option increased his winnings to $2 million.
"I bought four sets of Quick Pick numbers with the Power Play option on the day of the drawing," said Juarez, who purchased his tickets at a 7-Eleven store on Crooked Hill Road in Brentwood. "The next day, I used my cellphone to check my numbers, and that's when I knew I had won big."
Juarez gets his $2-million Powerball prize in a lump sum of $1,323,600 after required withholdings, the agency said in the release.
Juarez, who claimed his prize April 12 at the agency's customer service center in Garden City, said his winnings will not change his life, only improve it. "I'm going to enjoy life now, but I'm not really going to change anything."
Two other Long Islanders, both from Nassau County, also were among the $1-million winners introduced Thursday.
Juan Leonel Lopez Juarez, 42, of Port Washington, also won a $1 million on the new Family Feud scratch-off game. He purchased his winning ticket March 19 during a routine stop at J & Hee Deli and Grocery, 670 Port Washington Blvd., in Port Washington.
Giamanco and Lopez Juarez each will receive 20 annual payments of $50,000. After required withholdings, Giamanco gets a net annual payment of $33,090 and Lopez Juarez $30,590, lottery officials said.
Giamanco credits his luck to a change in strategy. A regular lottery player, he wasn't doing so well playing the newer instant games, so he purchased a ticket for an older game, he said.
"That's why I bought the Fabulous Fortune because it's been out there a while, but it's a good one," he said.
Later, when he scratched off the ticket at home and realized he had won, he said he was overwhelmed. "I couldn't speak. I had no words. I just started shaking."
Giamanco will use some of his winnings to pay down his mortgage and for buying "a bigger, big-screen television."
Lopez Juarez said he does not play the Lottery often but decided to "try my luck" with the new Family Feud game.
Only after giving his freshly scratched ticket to the retailer did he realize he had won $1 million, he said. "I was very happy and excited, but I didn't want to show too much excitement at the time."
Lopez Juarez said he is undecided on his plans but will use some of his winnings to help his family.
Other winners introduced Thursday included:
Melba Ortez Arias, 51, of Woodside, Queens, who won a $1 million in the Family Feud scratch-off game.
Honorio Gonzalez Urbano, 44, of Corona, Queens, who won $1 million on the 20X the Cash scratch-off game.
Carrie Wilson, 63, of Brooklyn, who won top prize on the Win $1,000 A Week For Life scratch-off game, guaranteeing her a minimum $1 million payout.
Carol Samuels, of Staten Island, who won $1 million on the Cashword scratch-off game.
Frank Magistro, of Lackawaxen, Pa., who won $1 million on the New York Gold scratch-off game, which was launched April 2.