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Columbia, SC (October 21, 2005): Shirley Johnson, of Bolton, North Carolina, was sound a sleep when her husband awakened her late Wednesday night, on October 19, with an announcement.

“Baby, I need you to get up and place your feet on the floor,” he said. “Now, take a deep breath.” “What is going on?” she asked. He responded, “I think you’ve won the Lottery.”

Johnson couldn’t sleep from that moment until she arrived at the South Carolina Education Lottery’s (SCEL) claim center in Columbia late Thursday afternoon on October 20.

“My heart is still pounding hard,” she said. “I went back to the store and the manager took pictures.”

Johnson, one of SCEL’s three Powerball® players to match the five white balls, purchased her ticket at the Time Saver Food Store in Loris.

Each ticket is worth $853,492 cash. Holders of the winning tickets will each receive $200,000, plus an additional $653,492 from the first-ever Match 5 Bonus Prize Pool for total winnings of $853,492.

The Match 5 Bonus Prize, a feature added to Powerball in 2002, was activated for the first time Wednesday night. When the Powerball jackpot surpassed the record jackpot level, previously $315 million, the new bonus feature limited the jackpot growth to no more than $25 million per draw. The portion of sales that normally would have been added to the jackpot amount above $340 million was moved to the new Bonus Prize Pool to be equally divided among the Match 5 prizewinners when the jackpot was hit.

“I didn’t know I was winning this much,” said Johnson. “I can’t wait to tell my husband. I made him go to work today!”

The story was a little different for a 29-year-old Simpsonville woman. On Thursday, October 20, she began her work day by backing into her parent’s garage. She was late for work and after a long day’s work, she decided to check her Powerball® ticket.

“I started shaking and crying as I read the numbers in the paper,” said the Simpsonville native. The woman wishes to remain anonymous. “I plan to pay my parents’ hospital bills, get my car fixed and invest the rest.”

One Match 5 Powerball® ticket, purchased at the Mini Mart #3406, in Gaffney, still remains unclaimed. Winning tickets worth more than $75,000 must be claimed at SCEL’s Claim Center at 717-C Lady Street, in Columbia.

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