Flat Tire Leads Michigan Man To Gas Station And $1 Million Lottery Prize

Posted on August 10, 2020 - Last Updated on August 18, 2020

Flat tires rarely pay off.

But one mid-Michigan man recently made a fortune because of one.

An Ionia County man pulled into a Mobil gas station in Webberville recently because of a flat. He ended up buying an instant Michigan Lottery ticket that won him a $1 million prize.

The man, who wished to remain anonymous, chose a one-time lump sum prize of $634,000 from the Millionaire Maker instant game.

Quite the fortunate flat tire for Ionia County man

The man also purchased a sandwich at the gas station, but the most important purchase was his ticket.

The $20 ticket was purchased at the Mobil, located at 2524 North M-52 in Webberville.

“I was having trouble with a tire going low on my car, so I stopped to fill it up and buy a sandwich and that’s when I got the ticket,” said the player, in a news release from the Michigan Lottery. “I scratched the ticket in the car and got so excited I forgot to even eat the sandwich I bought.”

Winning player will use funds to pay off debts

Instead of replacement sandwiches, the man said he plans to first pay off debt with his winnings. After that, he plans to share some of his winnings with family and save the remainder.

Because the prize was over $99,999, the man went to Michigan Lottery headquarters in Lansing to claim his winnings.

There are also lottery claims centers in Detroit, Grand Rapids, Livonia, Saginaw and Sterling Heights. Previously, players could only claim prizes of up to $50,000 at a claim center.

The lottery recently upped that threshold and added more claim centers statewide during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Northern Michigan residents can also make claims at one of five Secretary of State branch offices in:

  • Escanaba
  • Grayling
  • Marquette
  • Sault Ste. Marie
  • Houghton

Two more $1 million prizes still out there

According to the Michigan Lottery, players have won more than $92 million playing Millionaire Maker, which launched in April 2019. The $20 tickets offer chances to win prizes ranging from $40 to $1 million.

More than $6 million in prizes remain, including two more $1 million prizes and 11 $5,000 prizes.

Instant lottery tickets can be purchased at 10,500 retailers across Michigan.

In 2019, Michigan Lottery players won more than $1.2 billion playing instant games.

In the 2019 fiscal year, Michigan Lottery provided more than $1 billion to state public schools, its fifth record contribution in a row. Since it began in 1972, the lottery has contributed more than $23 billion to public education in Michigan.

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Matt Schoch

A Michigan native, Matt has worked at newspapers in Michigan, Missouri and the Virgin Islands. A versatile sports reporter, Matt has covered sailing on the Great Lakes, cricket in the Caribbean, high school and pro playoffs, and the Olympics in Rio. He's also the host of the Locked On Pistons Podcast and producer of a documentary on Emoni Bates. A former blackjack dealer, Matt has studied the industry from all sides.

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