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Minnesota winner has charitable heart

Kodjo Ayewonou

Drawing Date: 6/4/2019

June 6, 2019 - A Lyft driver from Coon Rapids, Minn., is proof that it only takes one ticket to win. Kodjo Ayewonou’s sole quick-pick ticket from the June 4 Mega Millions drawing won $1 million.

Ayewonou arrived at Minnesota Lottery headquarters in Roseville on June 6 to hand in his million-dollar winning ticket. When asked what he is going to do with the money, Ayewonou’s off-the-cuff response was, “Buy a Jeep!”

However, the immigrant from Togo, West Africa has even bigger plans for his winnings. Ayewonou plans to use some of his prize money to advance the mission of a non-profit organization that he started – the Ebenezer Charity Foundation in Coon Rapids – which provides sustainable access to clean water for people living in Africa.

Ayewonou said he has been working and praying for more money to help the cause. He said they brought food and clothing to the people at the Hiawatha camp last year and have plans to dig wells in Africa and help educate orphans in Togo.

Ayewonou purchased his winning ticket at Shady Oak BP, located at 11190 W. 62nd St. in Eden Prairie. The business earned a $5,000 bonus. His ticket matched the first five winning numbers drawn on June 4 to win the Match 5 prize worth $1 million. The June 4 Mega Millions numbers were 25-37-46-48-68 and the Mega Ball was 25.