DEARBORN HEIGHTS, Mich. (FOX 2) - Who amongst us hasn't dreamt of a sudden financial windfall? Maybe it was a family heirloom found to be worth more than sentimental value. Maybe it was a long-lost uncle who left a fortune. Or, in the case of a Dearborn Heights man, maybe it was hitting it big in the lottery.
Matt Swindall admits that when he woke up on August 20, just before a trip Up North, that he did believe he was still dreaming when he got an email that he won $25,000 a year for life in the Michigan Lottery.
"I got up early to get ready to head up north for a friends weekend trip," said Swindall, 45. "I checked my email right when I got up and had one from the Lottery that was different than anything I had ever gotten. I logged in to my account, and really didn’t believe what I was seeing. I rubbed my eyes over and over, but the screen kept showing the same thing: I had won $25,000 a year for life.
Matt bought his Michigan Lottery’s Lucky For Life ticket on the Michigan Lottery website for the drawing held on Thursday, August 19. He matched the five white balls drawn - 11, 12, 16, 38, and 48 to win the big prize.
But at that hour, who is there to tell? His wife - who said she didn't believe him.
"I woke my wife up and told her we’d hit the Lottery. Of course, she didn’t believe me, so I showed her my phone. She told me I was dreaming and went back to sleep!" Matt said.
Knowing the truth, Matt started the process of claiming his winnings. Only then did it really settle in.
"When I called to make the appointment to claim my prize, it finally hit her that we’d won," he said.
Instead of $25,000 a year for life, Matt took a one-time lump payment of $390,000 He'll use the money to buy a new home, build up his kid's college funds, and save.
"Winning is pretty amazing and life-changing for us. It’s going to put us at ease financially for a long time to come," he said.
The game costs $2 per play and you can win between $3 and the lifetime of cash including $1,000 a day for life. That prize requires matching all five numbers from 1 to 48 plus one lucky ball between 1 and 18.
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