Several months have passed without a single Mega Millions jackpot winner. However, on Friday, that 29-week streak ended as one lucky ticket holder took home the $1.28 billion Mega Millions winnings. On Saturday, a day following the historic drawing, players have taken to social media to lament their losses.
Taking to Twitter, one player despaired, “someone won the mega millions in Illinois right next to me.”
Another Des Moines resident took to Twitter to lament the loss.
More comically, a third Mega Millions player tweeted, “Someone won the mega millions, guess I’ll see y’all in office on Monday.”
Of the massive jackpot, Pat McDonald, Lead Director for the Mega Millions Consortium, said, “We are thrilled to have witnessed one of the biggest jackpot wins in Mega Millions history. We’re eager to find out who won and look forward to congratulating the winner soon!”
According to the news outlet, Friday night’s drawing saw the nation’s third-biggest lottery prize. The $1.28 billion jackpot continued to grow over the last several months as there’s been no winner since April 15th. As to the jackpot winner themselves, the player has two options in collecting their prize. The first is the annuity option. This enables the winner to receive their total $1.28 billion in annual increments over 29 years. The second option allows them to take home the jackpot all at one time. However, after taxes, it leaves them with about $747.2 million.
How Likely Are You to Win the Mega Millions Jackpot?
If had hopes for claiming the Mega Millions’ $1.28 billion, don’t be too upset that your ticket numbers weren’t called. The chances of actually winning are slim to none. Realistically, the likelihood of winning the jackpot is 302.5 million.
Further, we may also never know who took home the Mega Millions jackpot. As per the outlet, Illinois is one of several U.S. states that does not require players winning more than $250,000 to reveal their names. It further reported that lottery officials may not even know the identity of the lottery winner yet. Claimants are also not required to come forward right away.
“We won’t know whether it’s an individual or its a lottery pool until the winner comes forward to claim their prize,” National Mega Millions spokeswoman Danielle Frizzi-Babb explained.
Additionally, whether or not the player actually decides to reveal their identity, the venue that sold the winning ticket, which would be the Illinois Speedway, wins nonetheless. Already a hotspot for winning lotto tickets, the gas station and convenience store will receive half a million dollars just for the ticket’s sale.