Tamara Tomkins Wins Top Prize Playing the "Crossword" Scratch Game
DES MOINES, Iowa - A Delaware county woman won the top prize of $30,000 playing her favorite instant-scratch game, "Crossword."
Tamara Tomkins, 48, from Colesburg, stopped by her local convenience store on her way to work to buy a newspaper and a couple Crossword tickets.
"This is my favorite one," said Tomkins. "There's so much to scratch."
Tomkins said she didn't win a prize on her first ticket, but uncovered several words on her second one.
"I was scratching it and I got down to the last four and I had like five words. I'm like, 'Oh, that's not too bad,'" she said. "Then I kept scratching and there's another word, then there's another word, there's another word. It's like, 'Oh my gosh.'
"Then I text my daughter and she says, 'Well, did you check it?'" Tomkins told lottery staff as she claimed her prize Thursday at the Iowa Lottery's regional office in Cedar Rapids. "So I checked it again and it's like, 'Oh no. There's 10 words. I won $30,000!'"
Tomkins passed her ticket around to her co-workers to have them check it.
"All the ladies at work were like, 'Are you going to quit your job?'" laughed Tomkins. "While it's a lot of money, it's not enough to quit my work."
Tomkins, a telemarketer for Green and Associates in Manchester, said she's already shared the news with her children and husband, Brad Miller.
"They all thought I was joking at first," laughed Tomkins. "Nope, I'm not joking."
Tomkins purchased her winning ticket at First Stop Handy Shop, 425 Northern Ave. in Earlville.
Tomkins had thought of a couple of things to do with her winnings.
"I'm definitely going to pay off my credit card debt. And then I was thinking about helping my one daughter. She needs help paying for a wedding. So I can help her with that," she said. "I can help my other daughter with her living situation and maybe getting a new bathroom. I'm remodeling a bathroom. From there I haven't thought of anything else."
Tomkins also mentioned that she was thinking of buying lunch for all her co-workers to celebrate her win.
Tomkins said she definitely considers herself a lucky person after winning $30,000.
"It could be you. You can't win if you don't play," she said.