Metro-East News

Two Illinois residents win big at lottery this week

A Carbondale woman is $750,000 richer after a scratch-off lottery ticket proved to be a winner.

Buelah Simmons, of Carbondale, said that she buys an instant lottery ticket every week, according to the Southern Illinoisan. She stopped by a Shell gas station on Reed Station Parkway and bought a $25 “Ultimate Crossword” ticket, which has top prizes of $75,000 and $750,000.

Her scratch-off ticket instantly won the top prize of $750,000. “I’m so happy to have this money to share with my family during the holidays,” Simmons said.

Another “Ultimate Crossword” ticket was a winner for Daniel Henson of Toledo, Illinois. He thought he had won $1,000 when he brought it to the prize center in Fairview Heights, and when he presented it, he was told he actually won $75,000. “I was shocked!” he said in a press release from the Illinois Lottery. “I kept asking the lottery staff, ‘Is this a joke? Are you kidding me?’” He bought the ticket from a Circle K in Newton, Illinois.

Another “Crossword” ticket — this one $5 — earned a $75,000 payout for a Rossville woman this week, according to the Illinois Lottery. The sellers receive 1 percent of the prize amount claimed.

Elizabeth Donald: 618-239-2507, @BNDedonald