STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Mega Millions numbers are out. Now we wait.

Article Image

Lottery officials have this advice for the holder of the winning ticket from Tuesday night's $1.537 billion...

Posted: Oct 24, 2018 8:50 AM
Updated: Oct 24, 2018 3:00 PM

Lottery officials have this advice for the holder of the winning ticket from Tuesday night's $1.537 billion Mega Millions jackpot: Take a deep breath, then give us a call.

The winning numbers -- 5, 28, 62, 65 and 70, with a Mega Ball of 5 -- were sold at a KC Mart gas station and convenience store in upstate South Carolina outside Simpsonville, a city of about 18,000 near Greenville.

It's the largest US jackpot won by a single ticket, and it's the nation's second-largest jackpot ever, just short of a $1.586 billion Powerball prize split by three tickets in January 2016.

Now the big question is: Who won?

"Sign the back of that (ticket). Take a few days. Take that deep breath again. (Then) call the lottery," South Carolina Education Lottery Chief Operating Officer Tony Cooper said at a Wednesday news conference outside the store where the ticket was sold.

Store owner CJ Patel was "shaking right now, (with) goose bumps" while absorbing the news his establishment -- some five miles from the nearest interstate -- sold the winning ticket, he told CNN affiliate WYFF in Greenville shortly before the news briefing.

Patel's store gets $50,000 for selling the ticket, and he said he'll "do some good with that money."

As for the ticket holder?

"Whoever the winner is, hopefully spends that money locally and (does) some good stuff for the community," Patel said.

Winner could choose to withhold name

We might be waiting awhile to learn who won. The winner (or winners, if the buyer was part of a pool) has 180 days from the date of sale to claim the prize.

And South Carolina is one of several states to let lottery winners withhold their names from the public, so there's no guarantee the identity in this case will be released.

"Our board has a policy to protect the winner because of all the risks associated with having that much money," South Carolina Education Lottery Executive William Hogan Brown told ABC's "Good Morning America" on Wednesday.

Whoever it is, the ticket holder is set to claim a monstrous amount of cash. The winner can pick a one-time cash option, which would be a cool $878 million before taxes.

Otherwise, the full $1.537 billion jackpot -- again, minus taxes -- would be paid in annuities over 29 years.

Only one ticket matched all the numbers to win the jackpot, Mega Millions said. A whopping 36 tickets nationwide matched five of the six numbers for second-prize tickets.

Mega Millions officials had earlier estimated that Tuesday night's prize would reach $1.6 billion, but the total wasn't finalized until after sales stopped shortly before the drawing.

Still, the prize smashes the old Mega Millions record jackpot of $656 million, set in March 2012.

"This is truly a historic occasion. We're so happy for the winner, and we know the South Carolina Education Lottery can't wait to meet the lucky ticket holder," said Gordon Medenica, lead director of the Mega Millions Group.

Opinion: Pray that you don't win the lottery

Jackpot had been building since July

Mega Millions is played in 44 states as well as Washington, D.C., and the US Virgin Islands. A ticket costs $2 -- and the winner beat the odds of 1 in 302 million.

The jackpot has been rolling since July 24 when a California office pool of 11 co-workers shared a $543 million prize.

The next Mega Millions drawing is Friday, and the jackpot will reset itself to $40 million -- or $22.8 million cash.

How Mega Millions created monstrous jackpots -- but made them harder to win

But wait ... there's still the Powerball

Mega Millions aside, the Powerball drawing is Wednesday, and the jackpot for that is an estimated $620 million.

The Powerball has climbed since the last winning ticket in New York took home the jackpot in August, and it has had 20 drawings since then without a winner. Wednesday's will be the third-largest Powerball jackpot.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story incorrectly reported the Mega Millions jackpot was the world's largest. It has been corrected.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Confirmed Cases: 35237

Reported Deaths: 2197
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion9978592
Lake3689200
Allen171170
Cass15927
Elkhart138428
St. Joseph130934
Hendricks117773
Hamilton117093
Johnson1117110
Madison59461
Porter54729
Bartholomew52138
Clark51941
LaPorte43424
Howard42934
Tippecanoe4184
Jackson3942
Delaware38540
Shelby37522
Hancock34528
Floyd31940
Boone31635
Vanderburgh2842
Morgan28124
Montgomery24416
Noble23821
Clinton2381
White2389
Decatur22531
Grant21923
Dubois2023
Harrison19622
Henry18412
Vigo1718
Dearborn16921
Monroe16912
Greene16925
Warrick16628
Lawrence16524
Kosciusko1561
Miami1411
Putnam1377
Jennings1314
Orange13022
Marshall1282
Scott1213
Franklin1108
Ripley1086
Daviess9416
LaGrange932
Carroll933
Wayne855
Steuben852
Wabash792
Newton7810
Fayette787
Jasper681
Jay530
Washington511
Clay512
Fulton491
Rush483
Randolph483
Pulaski470
Jefferson461
Whitley433
Starke393
DeKalb371
Sullivan361
Owen341
Perry330
Brown331
Benton320
Wells320
Knox290
Huntington282
Blackford272
Tipton251
Crawford240
Fountain222
Switzerland210
Spencer211
Adams201
Gibson172
Parke170
Posey160
Ohio130
Warren121
Martin120
Vermillion100
Union90
Pike60
Unassigned0175

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Confirmed Cases: 122848

Reported Deaths: 5525
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Cook796733726
Lake8450307
DuPage7818380
Kane6467186
Will5649280
Winnebago231356
McHenry160673
St. Clair117286
Kankakee93050
Kendall81919
Rock Island68324
Champaign6527
Madison59560
Boone47617
DeKalb4225
Sangamon35029
Jackson28910
Randolph2704
Peoria2629
McLean22113
Ogle2143
Stephenson2112
Macon19419
Clinton18817
Union15711
LaSalle15414
Unassigned1470
Whiteside14213
Iroquois1324
Coles12715
Warren1170
Out of IL1151
Grundy1012
Jefferson10116
Knox1010
Monroe9612
McDonough9113
Lee821
Cass740
Tazewell745
Henry690
Williamson682
Pulaski550
Marion500
Jasper467
Macoupin462
Adams441
Perry410
Montgomery401
Vermilion401
Morgan381
Christian354
Livingston342
Jo Daviess320
Douglas280
Jersey241
Fayette213
Woodford212
Ford201
Menard200
Mason180
Washington180
Hancock171
Mercer170
Shelby161
Bureau151
Carroll152
Schuyler130
Bond121
Crawford120
Franklin120
Fulton120
Clark110
Logan110
Moultrie110
Piatt110
Brown100
Cumberland100
Johnson90
Wayne91
Alexander80
Henderson80
Effingham71
Massac70
Saline70
Greene50
Marshall50
Wabash50
De Witt40
Lawrence40
Richland30
Stark30
Clay20
Edwards20
Gallatin20
Hamilton20
White20
Calhoun10
Edgar10
Hardin10
Pike10
Pope10
Putnam10
Terre Haute
Clear
69° wxIcon
Hi: 91° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 69°
Robinson
Clear
68° wxIcon
Hi: 91° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 68°
Indianapolis
Broken Clouds
69° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 69°
Rockville
Clear
65° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 65°
Casey
Clear
71° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 71°
Brazil
Clear
69° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 69°
Marshall
Clear
69° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 69°
Sunny and Hot! Afternoon Storms.
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

WTHI Events