An employee of an East Hartford Stop & Shop for the last 33 years has claimed a $1 million Powerball prize.
Lottery officials said Gregory Clauss of Manchester claimed Connecticut's third and final million dollar ticket from the Jan. 13 drawing.
Clauss, a longtime employee of Stop & Shop's produce department, matched five numbers on his ticket. They were 4, 8,19, 27 and 34.
“I’m just glad to be one of them,” Clauss said. "It’s a big relief. I wasn’t ready for retirement, but now I am.”
Clauss said he'd been playing the same numbers for years.
“The Saturday before was my birthday," he said. "I played Powerball then, hoping to win the jackpot, but I didn’t win. So, I tried again on Wednesday. It was a great belated birthday present.”
The big jackpot ballooned up to $1.6 billion. Three winning tickets for that were sold.
Clauss showed up for work last Thursday and shared the news with his coworkers.
“I told everybody," Clauss said. "News spread very quickly throughout the store.”
Clauss purchased the ticket from the DB Mart at 653 Center St. The store gets a $2,500 check from the CT Lottery for selling a winning ticket.
“This is wonderful news,” said Danny Pahore, DB Mart's manager. “I’m really happy that someone from Connecticut won $1 million and especially happy that it was my store that sold the winning ticket."
Another Manchester resident, Daniella Maury also won a $1 million prize after the Nov. 18 drawing.
The overall odds of winning a Powerball prize are 1 in 24.9, according to lottery officials.
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