It’s no Joke, Illinois Player Wins $300,000 (But Wife Doesn’t Believe Him at First)


Mike Mamer of Washington, Illinois is an occasional Little Lotto player who purchases tickets once a week when the mood strikes.

On Oct 16 the mood struck, with Mamer winning $300,000 on a $5 quick pick ticket.  He almost didn’t buy a ticket that day, deciding last-second to make one of his occasional Little Lotto purchases.

Mamer, 38, coaches wrestling, and stopped to get a soft drink before driving to Monticello for a wrestling coaches meeting. He decided to purchase a $5 Little Lotto ticket which, as fate would have it, turned out to be the sole grand-prize winner in that evening’s Little Lotto drawing.

The next morning, Mamer went to his job at Mathis Kelly Construction. While at work, he checked the winning numbers in the Peoria Journal-Star and learned he was winner. At first I thought I matched four of five numbers, and thought to myself, that’s a decent prize he said. Then I saw I matched all five numbers, and said “Holy Cow.’

I’ll bet he used stronger language than that. I know I would.

After confirming the winning numbers on the Lottery’s website, Mamer called his wife, Lisa, to share the good news. Unfortunately, Lisa didn’t believe him, eventually hanging up on her insistent husband who has a history of practical jokes. I called her back, and then she believed me, said Mamer.

The Mamers have three children: two girls, ages 7 and 12; and a son, age 10. They plan to save much of their Lottery windfall to help pay for college for their three children. For now, we’re going to save and invest the money for when we really need it, Mamer said. The children are going to have a good Christmas, he added.



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Married to a beautiful (and extremely intelligent--- smarter than I am) South African woman. One child (brilliant). I've written three books, only one now available. Editor in chief of magazines...former managing editor .... news reporter, magazine writer, joker, sometimes a fool, lottery expert, lover of old, classic movies, music fanatic, Science Fiction fan (Warhammer 40,000, Game of Thrones). Goal for next year: Walk the Camino de Santiago. Into metaphysics, Esther Hicks (Abraham), Louise Hay


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