After many years of playing the Michigan Lottery's Lotto 47 game a struggling Schoolcraft County chicken farmer finally had his prayers answered last week when he scooped the $3.3 million jackpot.
Manistique resident Jeff LaBar successfully matched all six winning numbers drawn on Wednesday, May 21, 2014, and his $3,350,000 reward couldn't have come at a better time because most of LaBar's luck has been bad of late and he and his wife, Heidi, have been struggling to get back on their feet after the bank foreclosed on their home.
"I've played Lotto 47 for a long time and have prayed about hitting the jackpot," LaBar said. "God has truly answered my prayers and I am so thankful for his blessings."
LaBar had no idea a winning ticket had been sold in the area until his brother told him and although LaBar felt pleased for the winner it never crossed his mind that he may have purchased the winning ticket.
"I didn't even think to check my ticket until he asked if I was the winner," LaBar admitted.
But when he did check his ticket he had no doubts that his luck had turned. "I only checked my ticket once and I didn't have to look again," he said. "It was a total rush, there were a lot of emotions and a lot of tears when I found out I had won."
LaBar opted to take his winnings in a one-off, lump-sum payment of $2.1 million and although he has no plan to desert his chickens anytime soon, he feels a short vacation is in order and plans to take his wife to Hawaii.