Cleveland Co. man wins $255,555 on lottery ticket, plans to retire

Credit: North Carolina Education Lottery 

A Cleveland County man won who won $255,555 on a scratch-off lottery ticket says he plans to use the money to retire. 

“We’re about seven years away from retirement,” said winner Stephen Woods, who manufactures truck parts for a living. “This will be really nice to have.”

Woods’ wife was actually the one who bought the lucky ticket. He asked her to grab it for him, so she stopped by Southern Store on South Lafayette Street in Shelby and bought a $5 Fantastic 5’s ticket. Instead of waiting for Woods to get home, she decided to scratch the ticket herself.

“She called me at work after she did,” Woods said. “At first, I thought someone had died because of how frantic she was.”

Woods says once he realized what his wife was saying he just couldn’t believe it.

"I had to check the ticket for myself when I got home," he said. 

Woods claimed his prize on Friday at lottery headquarters in Raleigh. After required state and federal tax withholdings, he took home $177,614.

Woods is the first player to win the top prize of $255,555 from the Fantastic 5’s game which launched earlier this month. Three top prizes remain.