Southampton Town Secretary Claims $1 Million Powerball Prize

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Pat Turchiano, who makes her living as a secretary at Southampton Town Hall, has bought only a handful of lottery tickets in her life—but last week was her lucky turn.

The 62-year-old senior clerk typist in the town’s Department of Land Management, Environmental Division, purchased a Powerball ticket last Wednesday, May 15, at Southampton Stationery, just down Hampton Road from her workplace in Southampton Village.

In that evening’s Powerball drawing, the Manorville resident won $1 million.

“Of course I’m excited,” Ms. Turchiano said when reached by phone on Tuesday, “and my retirement will be a lot better.”

She declined further comment, saying she would not give interviews at least until after the New York Lottery prepares an official press release.

A formal ceremony naming the winners in the May 15 drawing is expected to take place in “several weeks,” according to Christy Calicchia, a New York Lottery spokeswoman.

“I think she’s going through shock right now,” said Ms. Turchiano’s attorney, Mike Sendlenski, who is also an assistant town attorney.

Ms. Turchiano was one of three second-place winners in New York State in the May 15 drawing, each taking home a $1 million prize. The others were from Massapequa and Brooklyn.

Ms. Turchiano’s winning numbers were 02-11-26-34-41; she did not have the Powerball, which was 32.

The grand prize jackpot, however, was not won until Saturday, May 18, when it ballooned to a record-breaking $590.5 million, the largest lottery prize to date. That winning ticket was sold at a Publix supermarket in Zephyrhills, Florida. Like Ms. Turchiano’s, it was a Quick Pick ticket, for which the numbers are randomly generated at the store.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the jackpot winner had not yet come forward.

Ms. Turchiano, meanwhile, claimed her winning ticket at Southampton Stationery at around 8:30 a.m. last Thursday, May 16, with her attorney, according to Rosemary Jannsen, the wife of Herb Jannsen, the owner of the store.

“She deserves it,” Ms. Jannsen said, declining to identify Ms. Turchiano by name, saying only, “She’s just a customer who comes in every so often.” She added that Ms. Turchiano introduced herself when claiming her ticket.

“We’re all excited,” Ms. Jannsen continued, adding that the winner was also excited, as well as a little nervous.

The store will not receive a monetary award as a result of selling a winning ticket but will get signs broadcasting its winning ticket to display in its windows soon. The windows already display signs announcing that it previously sold a New York Mega Millions $250,000 second-prize winning ticket.

Ms. Turchiano’s base salary for this year is $43,995, according to the town. She was appointed to her current post in 2008, after having been a clerk typist since 2003.

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