Statement issued Tuesday by the Hoosier Lottery:
INDIANAPOLIS – We have a winner! The $1 million Mega Millions with Megaplier prize won in Warsaw has been claimed. Hoosier Lottery Public Relations Manager Al Larsen presented a $1 million check to Ronald Redden of Winona Lake today. The lucky winner accepted his winnings at a ceremony at 66 Center at 2518 E. Center Street in Warsaw, which is the retail location where Redden purchased his winning ticket.
The northeast Indiana town had been abuzz with chatter and speculation about who the lucky winner might be since the Hoosier Lottery announced that one ticket purchased at the retailer was worth $1 million in the Tuesday, December 6 Mega Millions drawing. Redden discovered he was the ticketholder everybody was looking for when he checked his Mega Millions ticket Wednesday afternoon. He immediately called his girlfriend and blurted out "It's me!"
Unable to put the comment in context, his girlfriend responded "Dummy, I know it's you. I can see who's calling," prompting Redden to clarify, "No! It's me! I won the million dollars!"
Redden met with similar reactions in a Warsaw gas station when he walked up on some customers having a conversation about who the winner might be. Redden's exclamations of "It's me!" were met only with laughs and "Yeah, right."
Redden says he got a kick out of listening to people speculate about who the winner might be over the weekend.
"It's the icing on the cake!" he said.
The first thing Redden plans to do with his winnings is have central air installed in the home he shares with his girlfriend.
Redden missed the $87 million jackpot by one number (he missed the Megaball number), but increased what would have been a $250,000 prize by adding the Megaplier for an extra dollar which increased his winnings to $1 million! The December 6 winning numbers were: 7-21-29-35-49 MB: 39. The Megaplier was: 4.
Tonight's Mega Millions jackpot is an estimated $116 million.
The Hoosier Lottery is committed to providing innovative and entertaining lottery games for the benefit of the citizens of Indiana. In fiscal year 2011, the Hoosier Lottery generated $188 million in net income which was used to significantly reduce the motor vehicle excise tax for all Hoosier drivers and also supported the pension funds for retired Indiana teachers, police and firefighters. Player prizes for the fiscal year totaled $495 million and $56 million was earned by Indiana retailers on the sale of Hoosier Lottery products.
Since its inception in 1989, the Hoosier Lottery has produced nearly $4 billion in net income for the citizens of Indiana, nearly $1 billion in commissions and bonuses for participating Indiana retailers, and has paid out more than $8.4 billion in player prizes.
The Hoosier Lottery reminds players to always play responsibly.