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Waterloo Man Claims $7.5 Million Hot Lotto® Jackpot

Iowa Lottery Players Now Have Won Nine Jackpots Overall In The Game

Wally Markham   Hear Wally tell his story.

DES MOINES, Iowa - A Waterloo man who is Iowa's newest lottery millionaire has one goal in mind through the process: He wants to remain calm. His family, however, is having some trouble following that plan.

"I am very calm about it. These guys are more uptight about it than I am," Wally Markham said with a chuckle as he claimed his prize.

Wally Markham, 65, of Waterloo, traveled to lottery headquarters in Des Moines on Wednesday to claim the $7.54 million jackpot from Saturday night's Hot Lotto® drawing. He was accompanied by his girlfriend, Vicky Lindquist of Waterloo, and her daughter and granddaughter, also of Waterloo.

Markham's jackpot win was the third in a year for Iowa, following a Hot Lotto jackpot of more than $9 million won in May in Webster City and another jackpot in the game of more than $16.5 million won in December in Des Moines.

Markham purchased his ticket at Kwik Stop, 4335 Texas St. in Waterloo and said it's his usual stop for lottery tickets. The store will receive a $5,000 bonus for selling the jackpot-winning ticket.

Markham said he learned he might be the big winner on Sunday morning, after he had given his newspaper to his neighbor to read. His neighbor called him and asked if he had a Hot Lotto ticket. Wally said he did, and the neighbor read the winning numbers to him that were printed in the paper.

"He said, 'How'd you fare?' I said, 'I won,'" recalled Markham, who retired after working for 36 years at the Deere & Co. plant in Waterloo. "He said, 'Is that all you're going to say?' I said, 'Yeah, I won.' But I went over and looked at it, too."

Iowa Lottery CEO Terry Rich said that the lottery was happy to meet Markham and hopes to meet some other big winners soon, too.

"It's always a fun time for us when we see Iowans winning big," Rich said. "But we have two big unclaimed prizes in the state right now, and that's pretty unusual. We're spreading the word about them in the hopes that those lucky winners will double-check their tickets and come in so we can help them celebrate their big news, too."

The Hot Lotto jackpot won in December in Des Moines remains unclaimed and that winning ticket will expire on Dec. 29 of this year if the prize isn't claimed by then. The ticket was purchased at Quik Trip, 4801 NE 14th St. in Des Moines. It matched all six numbers drawn to win the grand prize of $16.5 million in the Hot Lotto drawing on Dec. 29, 2010, the third-largest jackpot ever offered in the game. The winning numbers that night were: 3-12-16-26-33 and Hot Ball 11.

And in addition to that big prize, a ticket sold in Ottumwa that won a $1 million Powerball® prize in July also remains unclaimed. That ticket originally matched the first five numbers but missed the Powerball to win a $200,000 prize in the July 23 drawing. But the player who purchased the ticket also added the Power Play® option to the winning play, which multiplied the prize to $1 million. If your ticket matches the first five numbers in a Powerball drawing and you've added the Power Play, the prize you'll win is always $1 million, no matter what the Power Play number is for that drawing.

The $1 million-winning ticket was sold at Kum & Go, 1317 E. Mary St. in Ottumwa. The winning numbers in the July 23 Powerball drawing were: 1-7-27-38-48 and Powerball 30.

Markham's win brings the total number of Hot Lotto jackpots won by Iowa Lottery players to nine.

The winning numbers in Saturday's $7.54 million Hot Lotto jackpot drawing were: 5-12-16-23-24 and Hot Ball 8. Markham's ticket matched all six numbers drawn to win the grand prize.

Markham said he plans to invest his jackpot winnings, and he already has tickets for the next lottery drawing because he definitely intends to win again.

"I plan on it," he said with a laugh.

Vicky Lindquist said she initially didn't believe Markham when he called to tell her the good news and was still having a hard time believing it was all real.

"It's overwhelming," she said. "I can't believe it. I really can't believe it.".

In addition to Markham, the seven other Iowa Lottery players who have claimed Hot Lotto jackpots are

  • Larry Dawson of Webster City, who won a $9.09 million jackpot in May 2011.
  • John Hall of Indianola, who won a $19.97 million jackpot in January 2007. It was the largest prize offered in the game to date.
  • Moses Bittok of West Des Moines, who won a $1.89 million jackpot in September 2005.
  • Danny Good of Des Moines, who won a $1.65 million jackpot in December 2003.
  • Todd Brobston of Fort Madison, who won a $1.3 million jackpot in November 2003.
  • Don Sporrer of Denison, who won a $2.7 million prize in December 2002.
  • Darlene Becker of Dubuque, who won the first jackpot ever claimed in the game, a $2.6 million prize in the drawing on July 10, 2002.

The Hot Lotto game began in April 2002, offering Powerball-style play but with easier odds. Hot Lotto players choose five numbers from a pool of 39 and another number, called the Hot Ball, from a pool of 19. The Hot Lotto jackpot starts at $1 million and grows until someone wins it. Tickets in the game cost $1. Hot Lotto drawings are held at about 9:40 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturdays, just before the Powerball drawings. The Hot Lotto jackpot returns to a guaranteed $1 million for Wednesday's drawing.

Hot Lotto tickets are sold in Iowa, 13 other states and the District of Columbia.

Prize Amount: $7,540,000  
Chosen to receive as: $5,638,643.65 cash option
Federal withholding: $1,409,660.91  
State withholding: $281,932.18  
Net amount: $3,947,050.56