Canajoharie woman has sensible plans for $1M jackpot

Canajoharie’s first-ever state Lottery millionaire understood the value of money long before she pic

Canajoharie’s first-ever state Lottery millionaire understood the value of money long before she picked up a Sterling Silver scratch-off ticket in Fort Plain.

Lorraine Larbell, 60, worked for 33 years before retiring following several injuries.

Larbell, whose ticket won her $1 million before taxes, stood proudly next to her daughter Angel at the Fort Plain News & Variety store Thursday and assured everybody that she won’t be wasting her newfound fortune.

She said she’s going to buy her daughter the laptop computer she’s wanted, pay off bills and save the rest of the money.

Her life won’t change, she said, but if something breaks down, she knows she’ll be able to get it fixed.

“When I need it, I got it there,” said Larbell, who worked for 15 years at the former Life Savers plant in Canajoharie before it shut down. She went on to work for 18 years at the Spaulding plant in Johnstown before being injured and retiring on disability.

Unlike recent big winners, Larbell didn’t sit on her winning ticket. She locked it up the day she bought it and headed directly to the state Lottery office in Schenectady the next day to claim her prize.

“I was nervous,” she said.

Helen Spaulding, owner of the Fort Plain News & Variety store, has been chatting with Larbell ever since she and her late husband bought the Main Street convenience store in 2003.

“It couldn’t happen to a better person,” said Spaulding, who said she’s starting to think her store is lucky.

One customer picked up a $2 scratch-off ticket and won $25,000 five or six years ago, Larbell said.

Every time somebody wins, Spaulding tapes a notice on the window of the store, refreshing the display each month.

On Thursday, there wasn’t much of a view out the window — it was full of winning announcements.

“That’s just February right now,” Spaulding said, pointing at the list of winners. “Every month that window is plastered.”

Spaulding expects that the new big win will likely prompt still more customers to stop in for a lucky ticket — they certainly did after word got out that Larbell won $1 million on a Sterling Silver ticket.

Customers came in by the dozen and purchased what remained of the Sterling Silvers that day.

“They were bought right up,” Spaulding said.

Larbell is now the fifth resident of Montgomery County to win $1 million or more, according to the Lottery.

After taxes, she will receive net payments of $33,000 a year through 2030.

Categories: Schenectady County

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