Raleigh man uses his family’s birthdays to play the lottery. It pays off big time

A North Carolina man used his relative’s birthdays to play the lottery — and scored a big win.

Charles Sullivan, a Raleigh resident, hit the jackpot after 10 years of trying his luck with the same numbers, the N.C. Education Lottery said Monday in a news release.

“They were birthdays, family birthdays,” he told the lottery.

Sullivan got the windfall after stopping at a Lowes Foods store in Knightdale, a town in Wake County. That’s where lottery officials say Sullivan spent $1 on a ticket for the Carolina Cash 5 game.

During the Feb. 13 drawing, he said he watched his lottery picks “pop up, one at a time.” It turns out, his ticket matched enough numbers to split the $631,674 prize, the N.C. Education Lottery said.

Sullivan kept $223,458 after taxes. Now, he said he hopes to pay bills and “sit back and relax a little bit.

The second person who won the Feb. 13 jackpot bought a ticket through Online Play but hadn’t claimed the other half of the money as of Monday afternoon. The two winners beat nearly 1-in-a-million odds to score their prizes.

It’s not the first time someone thought about their family members when choosing lottery numbers.

In January, a North Carolina woman also split a jackpot when she played her late grandmother’s numbers in the Cash 5 game, McClatchy News reported.


When gambling is more than a game

Gambling is designed to be a source of entertainment.

If you or a loved one shows signs of gambling addiction, you can seek help by calling the national gambling hotline at 1-800-522-4700 or visiting the National Council on Problem Gambling website.

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Simone Jasper is a reporter covering breaking stories for The News & Observer and real-time news in the Carolinas.


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