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Wewa man wins $1 million, takes $700K

Special to the Star

The Florida Lottery announced Monday that Leroy Brake, of Wewahitchka, claimed a $1 million prize from the $15 million Gold Rush Special Edition Scratch-Off game at Florida Lottery Headquarters in Tallahassee.

Leroy Brake holds a facsimile of his winning check

He chose to receive his winnings as a one-time, lump-sum payment of $700,000.

Brake said he feels blessed to have won a life-changing amount of money.

"I plan to give back to my community which has helped me through so much," he told the Lottery. "I want to donate some of my winnings to my church to help others in need."

Brake purchased his winning ticket from AMI 69 Food Mart, at 213 South Highway 71 in Wewahitchka. The retailer will receive a $2,000 bonus commission for selling the winning Scratch-Off ticket.

The $15 million Gold Rush Special Edition Scratch-Off game, launched in Feb. 2019, features six top prizes of $15 million - the largest Scratch-Off top prize offered by the Florida Lottery.

The game also offers 24 prizes of $1 million. The game's overall odds of winning are one-in-2.60.

Scratch-Off games are an important part of the Lottery's portfolio of games, comprising approximately 75 percent of ticket sales and generating more than $1 billion for the Educational Enhancement Trust Fund in fiscal year 2019-20.

Florida Lottery offices are currently open to the public by appointment only for players with prizes valued at $600 or more.

Players can request a claim appointment at headquarters and district offices through the Lottery's website, at www.flalottery.com/howToClaim. Players can still utilize the secured drop box located at each district office or mail tickets to Florida Lottery Headquarters or a district office.

The Florida Lottery is responsible for contributing more than $38 billion to education and sending more than 880,000 students to college through the Bright Futures Scholarship Program. The Florida Lottery reinvests 99 percent of its revenue back into Florida's economy through prize payouts, commissions to more than 13,000 Lottery retailers, and transfers to education. Since 1988, Florida Lottery games have paid more than $72.5 billion in prizes and made nearly 3,000 people millionaires. For more information, please visit www.flalottery.com.