We Will Probably Never Know Who Won the Mega Millions Jackpot
And the big winner is … we may never know!
A fresh billionaire who bought the winning Mega Millions ticket worth $1.537 billion, the second largest on record, in rural Simpsonville, S.C., may remain forever anonymous thanks to specific lottery rules in the Palmetto state of South Carolina.
South Carolina, along with Delaware, Georgia, Kansas, Maryland, North Dakota, Ohio and Texas, are all states where winners can opt to keep their identity on the down-low.
South Carolina's lottery chief went on TV and said they are there to protect the winner because of, "you know, all the risks associated with having that much money."
The lucky winner can also lay low for 180 days until he or she has to claim the eye-popping and forever life-changing prize.
The ticket was sold at the KC Mart on Lee Vaughn Road in Simpsonville. One ticket, and one ticket only matched the five numbers 5, 28, 62, 65, 70 and the Mega Ball 5 that were drawn on Tuesday night.
KC Mart owner C.J. Patel said at a news conference outside his store, which was decked-out with a new banner proclaiming, “Luck Struck Here!," was that it was good for his community of about 18,000 that the ticket was sold there.
Patel, who said he had no idea who bought the ticket, will receive a $50,000 bonus once the ticket is claimed.
“I’ll do some good with that money,” he said, adding that he’ll split it with his four employees.
The all-time jackpot remains the $1.586 billion for a rival Powerball lottery shared between three winning tickets in January 2016.
Mega Millions fell short of the expected $1.6 billion dollar jackpot as about 70 percent of sales are usually generated the day of the drawing. With the enormous amount of tickets sold, it is just a best guess estimate for the total jackpot amount until final ticket sales are tallied.
Tuesday’s winner has a tough decision to make: take an immediate cash payment of $877.8 million, or the full meal deal spread out over 29 years.