RALEIGH – Eliezer Vazquez, a clinical social worker from Raleigh, plans to pay off his car and student loans with the $250,000 prize he won in the March 30 Mega Millions drawing.

Vazquez learned of his win the morning after the drawing when he checked his numbers on the lottery’s website.

“I wasn’t sure I was seeing it correctly on the screen,” Vazquez said. “But it finally clicked that I’d won. I’m happy. There’s no other way to describe this feeling.”

After state and federal taxes were withheld, Vazquez received a check for $170,002. He purchased his ticket at the Kroger on Six Forks Road in Raleigh.
Vazquez said that he appreciates that the funds generated by the lottery support education.

“I figure it’s for a good cause,” Vazquez said. “I sometimes work in schools, so I get to see some of those efforts first-hand.”

Since the lottery began through June 30, 2011, Wake County education programs received more than $145.8 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.