RALEIGH – Harold Edwards, an engineer from Lincolnton, plans to use the $150,000 he won playing the 10X the Money game to save for retirement.

Edwards scratched off his lucky $5 ticket at the Coulwood BP on Belhaven Boulevard in Charlotte, where he made his winning purchase.

“I took the ticket into the store to have them scan it and they told me I had to claim at lottery headquarters,” Edwards said. “There’s nothing you can do to prepare yourself for that moment when you realize you’ve won big. The store owner was the first person to congratulate me, which was nice. It still might take a while for it to really hit me.”

After taxes were withheld, Edwards received a check for $102,001. As of Friday afternoon, three top prizes of $150,000 and many other prizes remain unclaimed in the game.

Ticket sales for games such as instant scratch-offs have enabled the lottery to raise more than $2.6 billion for education initiatives statewide. Since the lottery began through June 30, 2012, Lincoln County education programs received more than $17.1 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.