RALEIGH, N.C. — North Carolinians spend $92 million a year on the Virginia lottery. One man from the coast spent a few bucks on a ticket when he ran to the border. Now, he is the biggest Virginia lottery winner ever from North Carolina.
Hubert Griffin and his wife watched the Lotto South drawing Saturday night, not realizing their life was about to change. When the drawing was over, the Elizabeth City man told his wife, "I'm a millionaire or we're millionaires, you know."
Griffin's ticket matched all six numbers, making him the sole winner of the $12.6 million Lotto South jackpot. He said he is taking the cash option lump sum of around $6.8 million.
The retired Army sergeant got the lottery ticket when he crossed the border to go shopping in Chesapeake. Griffin said it was the best trip to the grocery store he has ever made.
With the recent addition of Tennessee, North Carolina is surrounded by states that play the lottery. Despite some interest from residents and the backing of Gov. Mike Easley, the state has no plans to start a lottery.