For anyone who might wish to share in the celebration or who lives vicariously, the suspense continues as the New York Lottery on Thursday said the winner of the $425 Mega Millions jackpot has yet to come forward.
The Jan. 1 prize, the largest in state history, was sold at a convenience store on Nassau County's North Shore.
The grand prize in what is the eighth largest in the game's history was sold by the Brookville Auto Service Shop on Northern Boulevard, the New York Lottery said Wednesday. The mailing address for the shop is Glen Head, but the location is in Upper Brookville.
The winning numbers are 34, 44, 57, 62 and 70, plus the Mega Ball of 14.
The holder of the winning ticket must claim their prize at a Customer Service Center. The two service centers on Long Island are 45 S. Service Rd. in Plainview and Jake's 58 Hotel & Casino at 3635 Express Dr. N.
Before announcing winners, the New York Lottery subjects them to what it terms a security check. Not only is it legally obliged to deduct federal and state income taxes from taxable prizes larger than $5,000 – no matter where the winner lives – but if the prize tops $600 it also must take out overdue taxes owed to the state, past-due child support and public assistance, the agency’s web site says.
Shop owner Jay Huang initially thought the worst when he arrived at his store Wednesday morning to find television news vans and police vehicles in the parking lot. But Huang said he was ecstatic to learn that one of his customers hit the jackpot.
“I hope whoever won needs the money and helps people with it,” said Huang, who has owned the shop, which has four employees, for 10 years.
Huang said he feels that his shop — which, while located in a wealthy enclave also serves blue collar workers such as drivers and landscapers — may be lucky.
Lottery officials say the Mega Millions jackpot had been rolling since Oct. 23.
Tuesday's jackpot has an estimated cash value of $254.6 million. The win claims the title of largest prize in New York history from the Oct. 27 Powerball drawing of $343.8 million, won by Robert Bailey at a Harlem deli.
The previous largest Mega Millions jackpot in Long Island history was sold on Dec. 27, 2011, to a California man, who claimed a $208 million prize, at the King Kullen supermarket in Middle Island. Daniel Bruckner said at the time that he went into the store to buy groceries for dinner, saw the size of the drawing, and on an impulse spent the $26 he had left in his wallet on tickets.
"It's very surreal," Bruckner said.