Winning Lottery Ticket Sold in Freeport

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Most of us have dreamed about winning the lottery, but one Freeport man no longer has to fantasize. Monday night he won $37.5 million.

"The guy worked across the street. He was very excited," says George Khorey.

George Khorey owns Horizon Supermarket on Galena Street. Kohrey's overjoyed as well. His store gets one percent of the winnings: $375,000.

The winner has two choices: he can take his winnings in a single lump sum, which would turn out to be half the jackpot minus another 28 percent in taxes, or he could take his winnings in monthly payments for the next 26 years.

"They both have advantages. To some, the lump sum sounds more exciting, but for some people having income coming in every month may be the better choice," says Al Larson, field vice president for American Express Financial Advisors, Inc.

Larson says inheriting millions of dollars is emotional, to say the least. He's encouraging the winner to take a step back and look at the numbers before he makes any spontaneous financial decisions.

"If you let your emotions take over, many people make more spontaneous decisions, but the more accustomed you get to having the money, the better decisions you'll make," says Larson.

So how should the prize winner preserve his money? Investments? Larson says there's endless options.

"Taxes are now going to be a big concern for this man, so different types of investment vehicles will afford different benefits," says Larson.

The big winner will surely have a lot of decisions to make, but he's probably just enjoying the ride. The winner has yet to come forward to lottery officials.

On Wednesday, the Horizon Supermarket will be presented with a check for $375,000. This latest winning Lotto jackpot had been rolling since November 2004.