Chicago Ridge Resident is a “Merry Millionaire”
After Instantly Winning $1 Mil from IL Lottery

Kathy Kamba with her winning Merry Millionaire ticket.


For Immediate Release Contact: Micaela Small (630) 486-0658


Tinley Park, IL December 13, 2012 – Kathy Kamba is a very “merry millionaire” after winning $1 million playing the Illinois Lottery’s Merry Millionaire instant game. Today, as she sat behind the wheel of her soon-to-be purchased new car, Illinois Lottery Superintendent Michael Jones presented Kamba with an oversized $1 million check at the Toyota car dealership where she works.

Not surprisingly, Kamba’s first purchase as a Lottery winner will be a new 2012 Toyota Rav4 that will replace her current 13-year-old model.

Kamba was on her way to work November 19 when she stopped at the store to buy a lottery ticket.  She selected one of the Illinois Lottery’s Holiday games, Merry Millionaire. “I love this ticket! I wait for it to come out during the holidays, I play it every year,” she said.

Sitting in her car, a 2000 Toyota Rav4, she used a quarter to scratch her Merry Millionaire ticket. “I just cannot believe I won!”  When asked what she did when she realized her ticket was worth a million dollars, Kamba replied, “I locked my car doors, signed the back of the ticket, put it in my purse, and drove to work.”  

“The holiday season is a special time of year, and ‘Merry Millionaire’—like all five of the Lottery’s newly-designed holiday instant games—reflects the spirit of the season,” said Lottery Superintendent Michael Jones. “We offer our sincere congratulations to Kathy, and hope she gets 13 years of trouble-free service from her new Toyota.”   

The Chicago Ridge resident has worked in the Business Office at Orland Toyota in Tinley Park for seven years. “We’re thrilled that a member of our Toyota family won the lottery. Everyone here is very happy for Kathy,” said Neil Potter, General Manager of Orland Toyota.

The winning ticket was purchased at Ridgeland Citgo located at 12100 South Ridgeland Avenue in Palos Heights. “We sell a lot of instant tickets at this time of year because our customers buy for themselves and to give as gifts,” said manager Sammy Nimri. The store will receive a $10,000 bonus from the Lottery for selling the winning ticket.

In addition to buying a new car, Kamba plans to share the winnings with her three sisters and many nieces and nephews. “Christmas will be a bit nicer this year,” she said.


Merry Millionaire Quick Facts:

- $29 Million in total prizes

-  Three $1 million prizes in the game (two $1 million prizes still unclaimed)

- 2nd chance drawing for $3,000,000




About Illinois Lottery

Founded in 1974, the Illinois Lottery has contributed more than $17.5 billion to the state Common School Fund to assist K-12 public schools, as well as the Capital Projects Fund. Play responsibly. Players must be at least 18 years old.