North Carolina man scores Cash 5 jackpot with numbers inspired by son, ‘totally shocked’ by win

Published 9:50 am Monday, December 26, 2022

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The North Carolina Education Lottery has reported a lucky Cash 5 jackpot win by a Wilson County man.

Joseph Gardner Jr., of Wilson, uses inspiration from his son to pick his lucky numbers – and it paid off when a $1 Cash 5 ticket delivered a $120,000 jackpot.

“I’ve been playing a combination of my son’s birthday and the sports jersey numbers he used to wear,” Gardner said.

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Gardner, 60, matched all five white balls in the Dec. 6 Cash 5 drawing to win the jackpot. He bought his lucky ticket from The Grocery Door on Nash Street Northwest in Wilson

He said he first realized he won when he scanned his ticket at a convenience store, but he didn’t know how much until he got home and checked the numbers online.

“I was totally shocked to be frank with you,” he said. “It was a pretty good night to say the least.”

Gardner arrived at lottery headquarters on Monday, December 19 to collect his prize and, after required state and federal tax withholdings, took home $85,213.

He said he will use his winnings to pay some bills and do some home repairs.

For more details on how money raised by the lottery made an impact across the state last year, visit and click on the “Impact” section.