The luckiest person in the world?
Look no farther than Joan Ginther, at least when it comes to winning the lottery.
Since 1993, the 63-year-old woman has won four windfalls on the Texas Lottery, each time winning more than $1 million for a total of $20.4 million.
The most recent win that has everyone talking: $10 million in a scratch-off game called “$140,000,000 Extreme Payout.”
Not only has each ticket been bought in Texas; two of the tickets have been bought in the same store, right in Bishop, Ginther’s town of birth where neighbors say she comes back every so often to visit her father and, apparently, try her luck.
“This is a very lucky store,” Bob Solis, the manager of Times Store, told the Corpus Christi, Tex.,-based Caller Times as news about the most recent win began to circulate Friday. The owner said the store sells an average of 1,000 tickets a day.
4 Texas Lottery wins, $20.4 million
Ginther’s first windfall came 17 years ago, when she won $5.4 million in a “Lotto Texas” game. She opted to have that sum paid out annually over 19 years.
The remaining wins came from scratch-off tickets.
In 2006 and in 2008, Ginther won two separate games that brought in a total of $5 million. She asked for both of those sums to be paid out in lump.
The most recent win, which officials estimate will hover at around $7.5 million after taxes, will also be paid out in lump sum.
The revelation of Ginther’s rather miraculous streak of luck over the last 17 years has garnered international attention – and wonder – over the past few days.
“This final bit of winning lottery must confirm Mrs. Ginther as the world’s luckiest lottery winner,” World Lottery News said in a statement.
The Daily Telegraph newspaper reported that the odds of winning four lottery jackpots is more than 200 million to 1.
Elusive winner 'born under a lucky star'
And as for the woman behind the massive checks from Texas Lottery?
It seems Ginther is almost as elusive as the mystery to her winning ways. Ginther has requested minimal publicity from the Texas Lottery and has not returned any phone calls to any media outlets that have reached out to her since last Friday.
Public records reveal, however, that she currently lives in Las Vegas, Nev., and neighbors have told several media outlets that she returns home to see her father in Bishop, Tex., where she frequently stops in to Times Store to buy a lottery ticket.
“It’s incredible for the store owner,” Texas Lotto Director Bobby Heith told the Caller Times. “Most of our 16,000 retail stores have never sold a winning ticket.”
The store itself will get $10,000 for selling the most recent winning ticket.
Regardless of who Ginther is or how she is able to to pick ’em, Heith told the Caller Times that one thing was clear. “She’s obviously been born under a lucky star.”