Local News

Powerball winner claims huge prize Bought ticket at Publix in south Sebring

SEBRING - A winning Powerball lottery ticket worth $2 million was claimed Friday, Florida Lottery officials reported. Marilyn Denise Smith purchased her chance for the June 12 drawing at Publix, 2824 U.S. 27 South. Smith didn't realize she had won until two weeks later, when she came back to Publix to have the lottery machine scan the tickets she had purchased. "She was very, very calm," said store manager John Wentworth. Then the lottery display went off and showed she was a $2 million winner.
"She started dancing around," Wentworth said. And before she left, Smith bought another $10 worth of quick picks, and he hasn't seen her since. Her lucky Powerball winning numbers were 16, 22, 23, 42 and 55. If the ticket had included the missing red Powerball number of 32, she would have won $70 million. The Powerball prize for matching five out of six Powerball winning numbers is $1 million. However, Smith spent an extra dollar on the Power Play option, which instantly doubled her winnings to $2 million. Smith scored the big prize, but Publix will also receive a bonus of $5,000 for selling the winning ticket. Wentworth said Publix put that money in a pool. There are two Marilyn Smiths in the Sebring white pages. "No, it couldn't be me," smiled Marilyn Smith on Grand Avenue. Another Marilyn Smith on Hickory Ridge wasn't home, and her phone number has been disconnected for months. Smith is one of several local lottery winners. June 22, 1991, the Case Eight Trust of Avon Park was the sole Florida Lotto winner of $6 million. July 31, 1993, Charles Krumbine of Sebring was one of nine Florida Lotto winners who shared $28.7 million. April 5, 2003, Doris L. Slenski of Lake Placid was the sole Florida Lotto winner of $21 million. Nov. 28, 2009, Wallace Alan Coffman of Lake Placid shared an $11 million Florida Lotto with three winners. Jan. 30, 2001, Harold Baucom of Sebring shared a $119,000 Mega Money jackpot with three winners. May 7, 2004, Joseph Colangelo of Sebring was the sole Mega Money winner of $1.34 million. July 24, 2007, James Dunn of Sebring won $1.24 million. gpinnell@highlandstoday.com 863-386-5828