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Lucky penny win: Retired bookkeeper among New Yorkers to split $15 million in lottery prices

NEW YORK — A retired bookkeeper in Queens is $5 million richer after winning big with a Lottery scratch-off ticket from a Queens pharmacy.

Ruth Tritremmel is one of several lottery winners from the Bronx, Manhattan and Queens splitting $15 million in prizes, lottery officials said. She bought the scratch-off card in Artis Drugs after she spotted another woman with one.

“I walked up to the clerk and asked her for one of those tickets,” Tritremmel said. “She told me it was number 28 and I knew it would be good because my daughter’s birthday is the 28th.”

She pulled out her lucky penny and was ecstatic to see she’d won. But Tritremmel thought she’d won just $5,000.

Tritremmel was stunned when she went to cash in her ticket and found out that she’d won 1,000 times that amount.

“I was told I would have to wait to receive my money because it was over $500,000. I didn’t understand because I was expecting $5,000,” she said. “That’s when the clerk told me I won the $5,000,000 jackpot. I almost fainted!”

She plans to use the winnings to help out her family. Tritremmel may buy a condo in Flordia.

A group of five family members and friends won $7 million in the Bronx after pitching in together for lottery tickets for almost 20 years. Their winning ticket was bought in Manhattan.

It wasn’t the only winning ticket sold in Manhattan.

A retired housekeeper from Manhattan also won big. Katalin Szenasi bought several lottery tickets at an East 79th Street newsstand and then returned home.

“It was the last ticket I scratched,” she said. “I almost fell off my chair! I saw the word jackpot and started gasping for air.”

She’s won $3 million and plans to use her winnings to buy an apartment.

“I immediately called my children to tell them the good news,” Szenasi said. “I couldn’t keep it in. I felt like I was going to explode!”