A look back at Staten Island lottery winners of 2016
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — When it comes to hitting the jackpot, this borough is a hot spot: In this decade, more than 35 New York Lottery winners hailed from Staten Island.
Last year alone, the lotto brought beaucoup bucks to four S.I. players. Here’s a look back at those who made bank in 2016:
Eduardo Reyes of Great Kills became $7 million dollars richer in April, thanks to the purchase of a $25 lotto ticket. The winning ticket was purchased at the Liquor Depot on Forest Avenue in West Brighton.
“I thought my eyes were playing tricks on me,” said the Colonnade Diner’s head chef. “I scanned the ticket at the store to be sure, but it wasn’t working that day. I brought the ticket home and put it in a safe place.”
Reyes said he’s putting his winnings toward a new home for his family: “I’m staying in Staten Island. I’ve lived there 33 years now, it’s my hometown.” Playing Powerball on Wednesday night? You may have a better chance than most in New York state, according to lottery data.
Nancy Viola, a homemaker from Staten Island, told her husband to purchase $10 worth of Powerball tickets on Jan. 8.
Instead, he went to 2520 Foodmart on Victory Boulevard in Willowbrook with $31 in hand and purchased “$20 worth of Powerball tickets, $10 worth of Mega Millions games and the $1 winning Mega Millions game.”
Viola was recognized for her win at a press conference, alongside New York Lottery’s Yolanda Vega, on June 30. On behalf of her limited liability company, The Orbity Fund, LLC, Viola chose to receive her prize in one lump sum.
“I still can’t believe it,” she said at the time. “It’s surreal, but exciting and wonderful at the same time. I’ve thought about my plans, and I want to make some investments and just be secure for the future.”
On Sept. 8, Islander Maryana Kotynkevych bought five sets of CASH4LIFE quick picks while in Brooklyn.
The 24-year-old podiatry student claims she checked her numbers on a whim and was in complete shock to find that all five of her numbers matched the winning.
“I still can’t believe I won,” Kotynkevych said. “I will use the money to pay off my student loans and my mother’s mortgage. After that I will take the entire family on a much-needed vacation to Turks and Caicos.”
Santiage Rosendo Sanches was on his way to work in June when he decided to pick up a scratch off. Little did he know he was holding the “golden ticket” to a lifetime of fortune. Sanches bought the scratch off at KP Deli on Hylan Boulevard — and scored the jackpot prize of $80,995 every year for the rest of his life. Congratulations, you’ve won more money than you can possibly dream of. Good luck being you.