‘Life-changing’ lottery prize leaves NC woman in tears. ‘Cried all the way home’

A North Carolina lottery player won a prize so big, it left her in tears, officials said.

“I think I cried all the way home,” Cynthia Neely said after learning she won $723,755.

But Neely didn’t realize she was getting richer at first. She originally thought someone else had scored the six-figure jackpot prize, the N.C. Education Lottery wrote in a July 24 news release.

“When I got in the truck and saw my first ticket said the jackpot was back to $20,000, I thought, ‘Oh darn, somebody already won the jackpot,’” Neely said.

That’s when Neely looked at her tickets again and realized she was mistaken.

“I had to convince myself that I had the winning ticket,” Neely told lottery officials. “It is a life-changing amount of money.”

Neely celebrated her emotional win after she went to a Kangaroo Express convenience store in Rockwell, roughly 40 miles northeast of Charlotte. While there, officials said she spent $10 on her lucky ticket of the Jackpot 7’s Fast Play game.

Neely, who is from the Gold Hill area of Rowan County, kept $515,678 after taxes. She reportedly “plans to give some money to her church, invest, and possibly take a trip with her husband.”

“I’m going to try to talk my husband into retiring soon,” Neely said.

It’s not the first time a North Carolina lottery player has burst into tears. Recently, two emotional winners planned to share their prize money with their family members, McClatchy News reported.

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