You’ve heard the expression about being “in the right place at the right time.” That certainly was the case with David Keeler of Great Bend when he bought his Hot Lotto ticket for the Saturday, July 9, drawing.
“I was standing in line at the Ampride store and it was almost the cutoff time for buying tickets for that night’s drawings,” said the 59-year-old player. “There was a guy in front of me buying a whole bunch of Pick 3 tickets and I asked the clerk, ‘Am I going to have time to get my tickets?’ She assured me I still had a couple of minutes.”
As it turned out, Keeler cut it even closer than that. He bought his $1 Quick Pick Hot Lotto ticket at 8:58:35 p.m., just 25 seconds away from the cutoff time for that night’s drawing. Keeler also had just enough time to buy four Powerball plays and a Super Kansas Cash ticket.
When he checked all his tickets on the Check-a-Ticket machine the following Tuesday, Keeler discovered his Hot Lotto ticket had a prize that was too big to claim at the retailer. He asked the clerk what to do.
“She told me I was a big winner, and then printed out the winning numbers for the July 9, Hot Lotto drawing so we could see what I had won,” said Keeler. “Together, we figured out I had matched the first five numbers but not the Hot Ball, which gave me a $30,000 prize.” The winning numbers in the July 9, Hot Lotto drawing were 10-12-26-28-38 Hot Ball 03. Keeler had 12 for his Hot Ball number. Had he matched the Hot Ball, too, he would have won a multi-million dollar jackpot.
Keeler hasn’t given up on that dream, though. Not only does he buy his own tickets, he plays with a group at work and also with a group of customers at Ampride, where he always buys his tickets. The lucky Ampride store is located at 2300 10th Street in Great Bend.
Keeler is employed by the Great Bend Street Department. His only plans for his prize money right now are to “put it in the bank.”