Lottery player wins big jackpot with ticket Dunn, North Carolina

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Darrell Riley scored $500,000 in a prize wheel spin event, officials said.

NC Education Lottery

A construction worker told his wife he ‘may have won some money’ – then he hit the jackpot in North Carolina.

Now the six-figure winner predicts great vacationaccording to the NC Education Lottery.

“We’ve never been on a honeymoon, so this is what our trip to Hawaii will be like,” Darrell Riley said in a Sept. 7 press release.

Riley got his first taste of luck when he went to a Circle K to Dunn, about 40 miles south of Raleigh. While at the convenience store’s Long Branch Road location, officials said he spent $10 on a ticket to the Bigger Spin game.

“I didn’t know what I won, I just called my wife and said ‘Honey, maybe I won some money,'” Riley told lottery officials.

Turns out Riley’s scratch ticket gave her a chance to spin a game show-style wheel. A video from the NC Education Lottery shows his spin hitting the $500,000 mark.

“I never imagined I would make half a million dollars,” said Riley, a 66-year-old living in the town of Cerro Gordo, Columbus County.

Riley kept $355,316 after taxes, officials said. In addition to the trip to Hawaii, he said he wanted to pay bills and donate to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

This isn’t the first time a North Carolina lottery player has considered embarking on an out-of-state adventure.

Earlier this year, officials said an award-winning couple were preparing for their dream vacation and a lucky dad was hoping to spoil his daughter at Disney World.

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If you or someone close to you is showing signs of gambling addiction, you can seek help by calling the National Gambling Hotline at 1-800-522-4700 or by visiting the National Council on Problem Gambling website.

Simone Jasper is a reporter who covers breaking news for The News & Observer and real-time news in the Carolinas.

Herman C. Harkins