Ernie Stephens, 63, smiled and kissed his wife, Judy, 56, for the cameras at the Missouri Lottery news conference. He joked:
I’ve gotta kiss her. Her name’s on the check.
The couple are now $675,000 better off after winning the Missouri Lotto jackpot on the 25th June. They opted for the lump sum option, and the money had already arrived in their bank account on Wednesday.
The conference was held at the Rivers Edge Phillips 66 gas station in West Alton. Which is where Ernie has been a regular for over 20 years.
Both of the Stephen’s worked for Walmart until their big win. They called the bank on Wednesday morning to check the balance – it was only a few dollars!
But they were just a bit too early – it wasn’t until 9am that the $675,000 arrived in their account. Judy laughed when she found her Walmart paycheck had cleared the same day.
So what are their big plans for the money?
Well, the first thing they bought was a tank of gas, and $5 of lottery tickets! You’ve got to have dreams Judy said.
They also spent the morning making out checks to clear all of their bills.
With the rest of the money, they plan to spend a third on a house, a third on their college funds for the grandchildren. And invest the remainder to secure their own future.
Other than that, they are both happy to just take life easy and happily watch the world go by.
The Stephens won with a $5 Quick Pick ticket. The winning numbers were 6, 10, 20, 30, 38 and 40.