Chris Crane and his wife Tina have only won the Lottery two times. The first win, $7, was nothing in comparison to the second.
The Cranes were the winners of the Oct. 3 Mega Millions jackpot, worth $42 million. The couple was in Lansing today to claim their prize and told reporters that they feel blessed by their good fortune. They opted for the 26-year annuity and today received their first installment of $1.148 million ($1.625 million less 25 percent federal and 4.35 percent state taxes). For the next 25 years, the couple will receive an annual payment of $1.140 million ($1.615 million based on the same tax rates).
While the current state of the market might be a reason to select the annuity option, rather than the lump sum option, Crane said the economy was not the driving motivation for his decision.
“The choice was simply that it is easy to control,” he said. “I can make a lot of plans on how to spend that money.”
Crane said he was in disbelief when he first realized he was a winner. He and Tina had gone to a “mom-to-mom” sale on Saturday morning then Tina, who worked as an x-ray technician on the night shift, went to bed. He then went online to check Friday’s Mega Millions numbers and when he saw that a winning ticket had been sold at Stoney Creek Party Shoppe in Washington, his first thought was, “no way!”
When he looked at the winning numbers, his reaction was the same. He’s played the same numbers for several years so he knew he held the winning ticket.
Crane is Michigan’s 6th largest Mega Millions jackpot winner and its eighth since the game began in 2002. For selling the winning ticket, Stoney Creek Party Shoppe will receive a $50,000 bonus.
Mega Millions tickets are sold in 12 states: Michigan, California, Washington, Texas, Illinois, Ohio, Massachusetts, Georgia, Maryland, New Jersey, New York and Virginia.
Over 95 cents of every dollar spent on Michigan Lottery tickets is returned to the state in the form of contributions to the state School Aid Fund, prizes to players and commissions to retailers. In fiscal year 2008, the contribution to schools was over $740 million. Since its inception in 1972, the Lottery has contributed more than $15 billion to education in Michigan.
For additional information, please visit the Lottery’s Web site at www.michigan.gov/lottery.