It has been a huge week for lottery players in southeastern Idaho.
Idaho Lottery officials say two residents have claimed top prizes on their games.
James Lester of Preston won the largest jackpot prize in the history of Ultimate Diamond.
On Wednesday evening, Lester stopped at Ransom's County Store in Preston to purchase an Ultimate Diamond ticket. His ticket matched the number 10 to the prize jackpot, meaning he had won $322,124.
“I just about fell over. I was sitting in my truck and I couldn’t believe it. I drove home to show it to my wife,” explained Lester, a resident of Preston for 30 years.
“I got home and looked at him and said, ‘What have you done now?’ That’s when he said ‘I think we won the Lottery.’ And I said ‘na-uh,’” explained his wife Royann Lester. “We got back in the car, took the ticket back to the store and had them check it to be sure. He won. I didn’t think tickets like this existed. But I do now!”
The couple drove to Boise Thursday morning to claim their prize. “Just wow! I don’t believe it. It hasn’t sunk in yet,” said James Lester upon receiving his check.
Lester, who owns a welding shop in Preston, said he plans to pay off his debts and save the remainder of his winnings.
Pocatello man wins $200,000
Meanwhile, also on Wednesday, Randy Hagler of Pocatello claimed a $200,000 winning check from the Idaho Lottery.
Halgler won the first top prize on the Scratch Game 20X.
He bought the winning ticket at KJ’s on Pocatello Creek Road in Pocatello.
Hagler, who is regular player, said he never thought he would ever win a prize this large and that his wife couldn’t believe it either.
The couple plan to use their winnings to buy a new house.