T.C. man says family will share in $1M lottery win

Wendell James bought his winning scratch-off ticket at this Vasco in Tabor City. (Deuce Niven, TLT)

By DEUCE NIVEN

tribdeuce@tabor-loris.com

     Wendell James of Tabor City plans to share his $1 million Millionaire Maker prize with his family, a news release Tuesday from the North Carolina Lottery Commission says.

     “I have a close-knit family, so I’m going to share it with my family, my brothers and sisters,” James said of his plans for the prize money. “I’ll be able to help them like they’ve been helping us all our lives.”

     It was Saturday afternoon when James purchased his winning $30 ticket from Vasco on East 5th Street in Tabor City.

     “I was in the den at home when I scratched it off,” he said. “My family was sitting there and we just got excited.”

     He claimed his prize Monday at lottery headquarters in Raleigh.

     “It feels fantastic,” he said of his win.

     James had the option of taking the $1 million as an annuity of $50,000 a year over 20 years, or a lump sum of $600,000. He chose the lump sum and took home $424,509 after required federal and state tax withholdings.

     Millionaire Maker is the first scratch-off to offer 30 $1 million prizes. James became the fifth person to win one of those $1 million prizes.

     Ticket sales from scratch-offs like Millionaire Maker make it possible for the lottery to raise more than $725 million a year for education, the news release said.

     For details on how $3.1 million raised by the lottery made a difference in Columbus County last year click here.