Berryville's $1 million scratch-off winner is taking it all in stride

Friday, October 19, 2007

EAGLE ROCK, Mo. --When Donnie Easley, of Berryville, woke up last Thursday morning, he had no idea he would go to bed $1 million richer.

"It's no big deal," said Easley. "Maybe I?can get out of debt. I would like to pay off everything that I owe and have enough left over to buy a new backhoe.

"It will probably be gone within 30 days," said Easley. "I know I'll be broke again. I'll still be working seven days a week."

Each day, on his way to construction sites in Eagle Rock, Easley, who owns his own excavation business, stops at L & L in Eagle Rock to purchase several Scratcher tickets.

On Oct. 11, following his daily ritual, Easley stopped at L & L and purchased a $10 Cash Spectacular ticket. When he scratched off the bottom row of the card, he was surprised to find the ticket was worth $1 million.

"I wouldn't say that I'm lucky," said Easley. "I've just spent a lot on these things. I have been buying them every day for around three or four years. Maybe I finally broke even."

Over the last few years, Easley has purchased several cards that were worth between $500 and $1,000. He estimated that his $1 million ticket would place around $600,000 in his pocket.

Easley plans to share his winnings with his wife, JeanAnn, and sons, Michael Don and Donnie Sam. He will probably also treat his best friend, Eli, to a special dog treat.

Easley's $1 million ticket didn't slow him down even for a moment. He was back on the job by Thursday afternoon.

L & L in Eagle Rock is owned by Mary Ann James and Jim Bryant. Although the store will not receive a bonus for the winnings, James was happy to see one of her loyal customers go home $1 million richer.

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