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REGIONAL: $20 scratch-off turns into $2 million gift for Mecklenburg County woman

Karen Urtecho Sandrez of Charlotte was gifted a present she won’t soon forget — a scratch-off ticket with a $2 million prize.

“It’s kind of surreal,” she said Thursday as she claimed her prize at lottery headquarters in Raleigh.

Urtecho Sandrez received her 100X The Cash scratch-off as a gift from a family friend. The friend purchased the $20 ticket from Lucia Food Mart on Killian Road in Stanley.

“I could not believe it, honestly,” she recalled of scratching her ticket and seeing her $2 million prize. “You read it and you don’t believe it.”

Urtecho Sandrez had the choice of taking an annuity of $100,000 a year for 20 years or a lump sum of $1.2 million. She chose the $1.2 million lump sum and, after required federal and state tax withholdings, took home $849,006.

Ticket sales from scratch-offs like 100X The Cash make it possible for the lottery to raise more than $725 million per year for education. For details on how $60.5 million raised by the lottery made a difference in Mecklenburg County last year, visit www.nclottery.com and click on the “Impact” section.