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Alexandria woman claims $100,000 lottery jackpot with hours to spare

- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 29, 2013

An Alexandria woman became $100,000 richer on Tuesday after cashing in her winning lottery ticket — and it only took her 179 days and 20 hours to do it.

With four hours to spare before her ticket expired, Karen Gentry walked into the Virginia Lottery's customer service center in Woodbridge at about 1 p.m. and ended a months-long search for the unknown ticket holder.

"I always check the numbers, so I'm amazed I missed it," she said.

Winning lottery tickets expire 180 days after each drawing.

The Cash 5 drawing was held May 2 and the winning numbers were 6-15-18-23-32.

Ms. Gentry purchased the ticket at the 7-Eleven in the 5800 block of North King's Highway in Alexandria. She let the computer randomly pick her numbers, and after buying the ticket she put it in a box in her kitchen.

Ms. Gentry said it wasn't until she saw a TV report announcing the unknown ticket holder had only four hours left to collect their prize that she remembered the ticket.

Lottery officials said all unclaimed prize money is put into Virginia's Literary Fund, which supports education. More than $234 million has been donated to the Literary Fund in the 25-year history of the Virginia Lottery.

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