While her family chattered away Sunday in their City of Tonawanda home, Anna L. Rabey glanced quickly at the newspaper, but long enough to see she won the New York State Lottery.
"I moved my glasses because I thought the line on my bifocals was going double again," said Mrs. Rabey, 71. "I had everyone in the room verify it. My blood pressure was about 300."
A retired factory worker at Spaulding Fibre Co. in Tonawanda, Mrs. Rabey will receive $2 million as she splits the $10 million prize with the holders of four other winning tickets.
She bought her eight Lotto tickets Friday at Tops Market on Young Street. She was so busy last weekend with her granddaughter visiting, she didn't check Saturday's lottery numbers until Sunday night.
The eighth and final ticket she bought was the winner.
"I got scolded by my husband for getting the extra ones," Mrs. Rabey said.
The Rabeys, grandparents of 17, usually buy four tickets, they said. Except for one $50 winner about 20 years ago, this was the first time their persistence paid off.
Besides the Rabeys, there were winning tickets in Monroe, Onondaga and Rockland counties. The fifth winner was from Manhattan.
The Rabeys' first installment of $95,238 will come July 15, according to Tom Carpenter, assistant regional director for the New York State Lottery. The couple will then receive equal payments for the next 20 years.
The Rabeys said they usually choose their numbers on a system, but the numbers of the winning ticket were chosen at random, Mrs. Rabey said.
"I felt kind of sick Sunday night," Mrs. Rabey said. "I didn't sleep a wink. I kept praying we would live long enough to enjoy it."
"I slept all night," said her husband, Merle, a retired welder for Wurlitzer Co.
The Rabeys said they had no plans to spend the money, except to buy a new car.