Lottery player relies on ‘eeny, meeny, miny, moe’ to pick ticket in NC — and it works

A random lottery ticket selection brought one North Carolina man to tears, lottery officials said.

While stopping by a Holly Ridge convenience store Jan. 20, Shawn Horsley Jr. walked up to the counter to pick up a lottery ticket, according to a Jan. 23 North Carolina Education Lottery news release.

But he had one problem: he didn’t know what type of ticket he wanted to buy, he told lottery officials. So instead, he decided to play a little game for the first time to make his decision.

“I did eeny, meeny, miny, moe,” the Sneads Ferry man told lottery officials with a laugh.

The rhyme ended up working wonders for the Onslow County resident, whose $5 scratch-off ended up being worth $200,000, according to lottery officials.

After bringing the ticket to his car with his fiance and kids inside, Horsley began to scratch. The prize money came as a major shock to the whole family.

“We started crying when we saw it,” the man said.

He was the first to win the North Carolina lottery game, Pot of Gold, which has four tickets worth $200,000, lottery officials said. Horsley couldn’t believe he was one of them.

“I double, triple, quadruple checked it,” he said.

His prize money totaled $143,001 after paying taxes, lottery officials said.

Horsley has a few different ideas in mind for how to spend his winnings. Making repairs to his house, helping out some people he knows and putting away the rest in his savings are his top priorities, he told lottery officials.

Sneads Ferry is about 45 miles northeast of Wilmington.

Many people can gamble or play games of chance without harm. However, for some, gambling is an addiction that can ruin lives and families.

If you or a loved one shows signs of gambling addiction, you can seek help by calling the national gambling hotline at 1-800-522-4700 or visiting the National Council on Problem Gambling website.

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