Mary Elliot of Buckingham County, Va., said she had to fish a coffee-stained Cash 5 with EZ Match ticket out of the trash when she realized it was a $110,000 winner. Photo courtesy of the Virginia Lottery
March 29 (UPI) -- A Virginia woman who won a $110,000 prize from a lottery drawing said she was instantly faced with an unexpected problem -- she had already thrown the ticket in the trash.
Mary Elliot of Buckingham County told Virginia Lottery officials she selected the numbers 6-13-18-21-25 when she bought her ticket for the Feb. 24 Cash 5 with EZ Match drawing from the Food Lion store in Dillwyn.
Elliot said she recognized the numbers when she checked the results of the drawing because they represent important family birthdays.
"When I saw I'd won, I couldn't stop shaking to save my life," Elliot said.
Elliot said her disbelief soon turned to panic when she realized she had mistakenly already thrown the ticket into the trash.
The player retrieved the ticket from the garbage, but the now coffee-stained ticket's barcode wouldn't work when she tried to scan it.
Elliot took the ticket to the Virginia Lottery's Prize Zone West in Henrico, where officials were able to confirm the stained ticket was a valid winner.
The ticket earned Elliot a $110,000 jackpot. The winner did not say if she had any plans for her prize money.