When Ann Burhans' husband Robert compared his Mega Millions tickets -- purchased at a Stewart's on Broadway in Kingston on July 10 -- to the drawing posted online, it took several minutes for him to realize he had gotten the first five numbers right, earning the second place prize of $1 million.
"I just cried. I couldn't believe it," Ann said.
"She goes, 'There's gotta be something wrong,' " Robert recounted during a press conference inside the store. "I clicked on another portion of the website, and it said that the winning million-dollar ticket was bought at Stewart's on Broadway in Kingston. I said, 'We won.' She said, 'No we didn't.' "
It almost did not happen.
Robert said he and Ann were driving home from a day at the lake when Ann said she wanted a drink to cool off. Robert said he first suggested going through a drive-thru, but Ann said she'd prefer a cold bottled soda from Stewart's.
Once inside, Robert noticed the Mega Millions jackpot was pushing $250 million, so he gave it a shot, like he usually does when the jackpot climbs that high and he is near a convenience store cash register.
Robert is going to net $671,800 after required withholdings. He said one of the first things he plans to do with the money is to "probably pay off the mortgage."
He also said he still plans to keep playing the lottery -- he said he bought a ticket the other day -- and he will still keep showing up at his part-time job.
"That's my plan," he said. "We had a life plan, and I don't think I'm going to change mine."