REGIONAL: Mecklenburg County man wins $1 million: ‘One of the happiest days of my life’

Published 1:33 pm Friday, July 8, 2022

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

RALEIGH – Costa Walton of Mint Hill will never forget July 6, 2022, the day a scratch-off ticket led to a $1 million win.

“It’s one of the happiest days of my life,” Walton said. “And I’m almost 70.”

Walton, 68, bought his lucky $30 $Millionaire Maker ticket from Flash Market on Old Monroe Road in Indian Trail. After he got home, he sat with his wife and started scratching the ticket.

“First I looked at her, then I looked at it again,” Walton said. “We had to keep looking at it to make sure our eyes weren’t deceiving us.”

When Walton arrived at lottery headquarters Thursday to collect his prize, he had a decision to make. He could choose to receive the prize as an annuity of $50,000 over 20 years or a lump sum of $600,000. He chose the lump-sum amount of $600,000 and, after required state and federal tax withholdings, took home $426,069.

“I guess this was my lucky time,” Walton said. “I’m just elated.”

He said he wants to use his winnings to pay some bills and help out his family.

Ticket sales from scratch-off games make it possible for the lottery to raise more than $900 million per year for education. For details on how $62.6 million raised by the lottery made a difference in Mecklenburg County in 2021, visit and click on the “Impact” section.