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Keokuk County Woman Receives $30,000 Gift

Jodi Markham Wins the Top Prize Playing "Crossword" Scratch Game

Jodi Markham   Hear Jodi tell her story.

DES MOINES, Iowa - A Keokuk County woman said she never expected to win the top prize on a "Crossword" ticket she received as a gift.

Jodi Markham, 45, received the ticket as a gift from her boss at the University of Iowa, where Markham works as a secretary.

"When I opened up my presents and saw my lottery tickets we all laughed about it," Markham said. "Later on that morning I decided I'd scratch one off. I scratched [it] off and that was it."

Markham, who is from What Cheer, said she wasn't alone in the office when she scratched the ticket and no one could believe what she'd won.

"We kept checking and checking and checking and it kept coming up right. Me and a girl in my office quickly went down and checked it and it was real!"

Markham said she initially thought she'd won $30.

"I kept scratching and I thought, 'Boy, I'm getting a lot of full words on here,'" she said. "It kept going up and up and finally I had one letter left and when I scratched off and I said, 'I won $30,000.'"

Markham has told all her family and friends and she said while they didn't believe her at first, they're all excited for her.

Markham plans to use some of her winnings to buy her daughter a wedding gift and plans to save the rest. She claimed her prize Dec. 27 at the Iowa Lottery's regional office in Cedar Rapids. She purchased her winning ticket at Hy-Vee, 5050 Edgewood Road in Cedar Rapids.