As it turns out, the Maryland McDonald’s employee who claimed to have won the historic $656 million Mega Millions jackpot wasn’t one of the individuals to collect a hefty check in the state this morning. Those honors went to three Maryland public school teachers who stepped forward with an actual winning ticket to collect their prize.
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According to the New York Daily News:
The trio made themselves known to lottery officials after stashing the winning ticket in a safe since they scooped the record-breaking $656 million draw last month.
They took the cash in one lump sum, walking away with $34.99 million each after taxes, but say they have no plans to give up their day jobs.
The teachers, who chose to remain anonymous, are all employed by the Maryland public school system and used to work together, officials said.
One is an elementary teacher, one is a special Ed teacher and the third provides administrative support in a school and they now jokingly call each other the “three amigos.”
There was another lotto winner in Kansas, who lottery officials confirmed wanted to remain completely anonymous — not even revealing their gender. As for Mirlande Wilson – the McDonald’s employee who made headlines after claiming she won the jackpot but wouldn’t share her winnings with her work pool – a lottery official told the Daily News, “that is not the winner .”
Embarrassing as this revelation might be, at least Mirlande Wilson won’t have to prep for a legal fight anymore. Before the real winners surfaced, Wilson defiantly told the New York Post, “We had a group plan, but I went and played by myself. [The winning ticket] wasn’t on the group plan.”
In response, Mandisa Mazibuko filed a suit in Baltimore alleging that Wilson was heard telling three of her co-workers in the pool “we won.” Mazibuko doesn’t work at McDonalds, but claimed she has a friend that does and entered $5 in the work pool through her. Now that it’s clear Wilson doesn’t have a lotto jackpot to fight for, perhaps she can begin playing the lotto solo. It could be worse, though. Just imagine how Mirlande will feel the next time she shows up for work.