Local News

Morrisville man wins $200K a year for life

Posted February 5, 2011 1:07 p.m. EST

— A lucky Morrisville man faces a difficult question: What will he do with $200,000 a year for the rest of his life?

Michael Stutts, 53, scratched off a lottery ticket Thursday and discovered that he was the first winner of the North Carolina Education Lottery's new game, $200,000 a Year for Life.

He received his first check Friday – $136,000 after taxes – and faced the question of what to do next.

"That's a good question. What's next? I may want to retire," said Stutts, who's a senior project manager with a RTP company. "The first thing I wanted to do was get the check."

Stutts bought the $20 scratch-off ticket at the Phoenix Travel Center on N.C. Highway 210 in Pender County while coming home from a business trip. After seeing his winnings, he quietly left the store but had to pull over to the side of the road to collect his thoughts and call his wife.

Stutts said he told his wife, Ruth, he had a winning ticket, then left it on the mantle.

"I said, 'I did it. She said, 'You did what?'" he recalled. "I said, 'I won $4 million – hopefully more.'"

Stutts will get $200,000 payments a year for the rest of his life. He or his estate are guaranteed a prize totaling $4 million.

"I hope you wish me a long and healthy life," he said.