Lottery Lightning Strikes Twice For WNC Man -

Lottery Lightning Strikes Twice For WNC Man

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A WNC man purchases two winning lotto tickets at same store 18 months apart. A WNC man purchases two winning lotto tickets at same store 18 months apart.

Many people dream about winning the lottery, and Dan Royal is no different.

“I knew it was coming,” says Royal, “I felt it."

On Friday, the N.C. Education Lottery announced Royal as one of the biggest winners in state lotto history.

“I think it is fantastic that real people can win,” said Royal’s daughter Kim Johnson.

After scratching off $750,000 playing “Jumbo Bucks” last February, Royal won the top prize on a “$5,000 a Week for Life ticket.”

“It couldn't happen to a nicer person and that is the God’s honest truth,” said Tim Mace, owner of The Little Cubbard in Rutherfordton where Royal bought his winning tickets.

After Royal won the first time, no one ever thought he would do it again.

“Thought he was not too smart buying more tickets but he proved us wrong,” said Royal’s former boss Dan Carpenter.

Royal, however, never doubted the possibility.

Instead of collecting his most recent prize as an annuity in $260,000 payments each year for the rest of his life, Royal opted to collect a one-time cash payment of $3.5 million.

“All my troubles are over, my problems are over and I should have an easy life from here on out,” Royal said.

So what is the 60-year-old now retired carpenter's secret?

Royal says he only likes to play $10 scratch-off games and he won’t buy from a roll that is more than half gone.

“I just felt like when I scratched the first one that I wasn't done,” says Royal, “that a second one was on its way."

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