With 10 little words and one lucky lottery ticket, a San Diego man recently won big – claiming a $750,000 prize.
Marco Amador, 39, stopped by a Stater Bros. supermarket located at 1048 North El Camino Real in Encinitas and bought a $10 “Mystery Crossword Scratchers” ticket.
The game, which he recently started playing, challenges players to successfully form 10 words, crossword puzzle style. The chance of winning the $750,000 grand prize is one in 1,233,283, according to the California Lottery website.
Well, Amador – the manager of a local auto detail shop – beat the odds.
Lottery officials said Amador was at work one day when he realized one of the puzzles on his “Scratchers” ticket had completed 10 words. He raced to a store with a California Lottery Check-A-Ticket verification machine and scanned his ticket.
He stood there, staring at the screen. The look on Amador’s face changed so drastically that a store employee asked him if he was okay, lottery officials said in a press release.
“I just pointed at the machine,” Amador said. “I was just kind of blank and I was looking (pale).”
Shocked, he went back to work.
“It was kind of hard to think straight,” he recalled. “I kept wondering what am I going to do? I was a little headachy, but a good headache.”
Amador claimed the ticket at the California Lottery’s San Diego District Office. He said he may buy a house with his winnings.
He had only played the “Mystery Crossword Scratchers” game a few times before his victory, as he was more of a Mega Millions and Powerball player.
“I think it’s a good game. It’s a good one now,” he joked.