June 18, 2013

Kokomo bank teller's luck turns around

ConwellINDIANAPOLIS - Rhonda Conwell of Kokomo was feeling pretty unlucky Sunday morning after having a less-than-lucky night at a casino the night before.

"I was bummed.  I didn't feel well and I was complaining that I never win anything," said Conwell.  "I felt like just one time I'd like to win something, anything."

As she dropped off her boyfriend, Howard Slusher of Kokomo, at work at Menards Sunday morning, he tried to cheer her up.

"I said, 'Well, go try your luck on a couple Lottery tickets,'" said Slusher. 

Conwell heeded her boyfriend's advice and purchased four Hot Cash Scratch-offs at Woody's Food Stores at 1300 North Phillips Street in Kokomo later that day.   It was a move that presented Conwell with the elusive lucky break she'd been waiting for.

One of the tickets was a $100,000 top prize winner.

"I was in shock," said Conwell. "I never win anything.  Never. Never.  Never."

Conwell immediately called her boyfriend at work to tell him the news.

"Of course I didn't believe her," said Slusher.  "So she brought the ticket in and showed me.  Then she called me like every hour to say, 'Can you believe it? Is this real?'"

Conwell I wonConwell was still stunned as she claimed her winnings at Hoosier Lottery Headquarters Monday.  With the cash in hand, Conwell plans to pay bills, do a little shopping and set a good chunk aside for a rainy day.

"It'll be nice not to be struggling financially and have money in the bank," said Conwell who works as a bank teller. 

The couple is also excited to extend an already-planned vacation by a couple days.

"We're going to Cedar Point in July," said Conwell.  "We'll stay a couple extra days now and have some extra cash."

The mission of the Hoosier Lottery is to maximize net income for the state in a socially-responsible manner. In fiscal year 2012, the Hoosier Lottery generated $211 million in surplus revenue 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 $533 million and $60 million was earned by Indiana retailers on the sale of Hoosier Lottery products.

Since its inception in 1989, the Hoosier Lottery has produced more than $4.2 billion for the citizens of Indiana, $1 billion in commissions and bonuses for participating Indiana retailers, and has paid out more than $8.9 billion in player prizes.


For more information, please contact Betsy Gutierrez at bgutierrez@hoosierlottery.com or 317-264-4852 or Al Larsen at alarsen@hoosierlottery.com or 317-242-8803.

Photo:  Rhonda Conwell of Kokomo claims her winnings at Hoosier Lottery Headquarters in Indianapolis June 17.


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