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Dansville Man Receives a Million Thanks

William Shaffer, Jr. of Dansville received much more than a simple “thank you” for helping his sister and brother-in-law with various projects around the house.


“In our family, when it is someone’s birthday or other occasion, we give each other cards with Lottery tickets as part of the gift,” said Shaffer. “So it’s not unusual that my sister tucked a Lottery ticket in my thank you card.” 


The card included a $1,000,000 Cashword scratch-off ticket, and it was a jackpot winner. 


Shaffer, who works as a painter, said when he scratched the ticket he started writing the words down on a separate piece of paper so he could keep track of how many matched up. 


“I thought I had quite a few of the words match up, but I thought ‘this can’t be true.’ So I asked my sister to come to the store with me so we could run the ticket through the scanner.” 


The scanner wasn’t working, so Shaffer said he handed the ticket to the clerk to check it. 


“She just looked at me and said ‘You won big,’ and then she gave me this print out that said ‘File claim with the Lottery -- $1 million.’” 


Shaffer said both he and his sister were just in shock. 


“I really didn’t know what to think. I never thought something like this could happen to me. It’s amazing, but I’m still in shock.” 


Shaffer said he doesn’t usually play Lottery scratch-off games because he doesn’t have the patience for them. 


“I usually play Mega Millions and Powerball when the jackpots are high, and I buy Quick Pick tickets,” he said. Shaffer will receive his $1,000,000 prize as a one-time lump sum payment of $661,800 after required withholdings. 


Shaffer’s plans for the money include taking care of his family. “After that, I’m really not sure. I want to take some time to really think about it. Maybe at some point in the future, I’ll buy a house.” 


The New York Lottery contributed $12,259,528 in Lottery Aid To Education to school districts throughout Livingston County during fiscal year 2015-2016. 


About the New York Lottery 

The New York Lottery continues to be North America’s largest and most profitable Lottery, contributing $3.30 billion in fiscal year 2015-2016 to help support education in New York State. The Lottery’s contribution represents 14 percent of total state education aid to local school districts. 


New York Lottery revenue is distributed to local school districts by the same statutory formula used to distribute other state aid to education. It takes into account both a school district’s size and its income level; larger, lower-income school districts receive proportionately larger shares of Lottery school funding.