RALEIGH – Ricky Watkins, a mechanic from Stoneville in Rockingham County, said he plans to use the $244,086 prize he won playing Carolina Cash 5 to save for retirement.
Watkins matched all five numbers in the June 30 drawing to win the jackpot. He learned of his win the next day as he asked the clerk at the Garrett Mini Mart on East Main Street in Stoneville, where he made his purchase, to check the ticket for him.
“I almost fell to the floor,” Watkins said. “I didn’t sleep much that night, and when I did, I kept the ticket in my pocket. I couldn’t believe it and I still can’t.“
With his winnings, worth $165,979 after taxes, Watkins also plans to purchase a new pair of work boots.
“That’s even more than I thought I’d get,” Watkins said as he held his check for the first time. “I hope to come back here again someday.”
Since the lottery began through June 30, 2011, Rockingham County education programs received more than $18.2 million in lottery funds. By law, those funds pay for teachers’ salaries in grades K-3, school construction, prekindergarten programs for at-risk four-year-olds, and need-based college scholarships and financial aid.
To date, the N.C. Education Lottery has raised more than $2.45 billion for these initiatives statewide.