A Guyanese mother of three became a New York jackpot winner last month when her numbers matched the $18 million jackpot up for grabs.

According to a Daily Gazette report, Jacklyn Lyte checked her lotto numbers the night of December 5, 2007 and immediately called her sister as the long-time state worker and native of Guyana, had just gone through all the numbers for the $18 million jackpot – they all matched.

“She told me ‘you better go make a cup of tea and sit down,’ ” Lyte said in the report. “Then she called me back and asked ‘are you OK?’ ”

“I’m OK, are you OK?” Lyte responded.

The 58-year-old Lyte was reported as still being calm last week Friday when her win was being announced by the New York State Lottery as the official recipient of the largest such payout in the game’s history to an Albany County winner. She chose the lump-sum payment, which still netted her just over $9 million before taxes.

Lyte purchased her winning ticket at the Night Owl convenience store on Fulton Street in Troy, New York near where she worked.

The report stated that she has played the lottery regularly for years, purchasing tickets the day before both the Wednesday and Saturday drawings. The tickets were always quick picks, no special numbers. She also did not play scratch-offs.

She worked at the state Department of Labour for the past 21 years as a claims examiner but officially retired from her job this week.

The woman has been living in United States since the late 1960s or early 1970s, she said.

She said she intends to use the money to live comfortably, paying off her daughter’s student loans and buying a house and a better car.

She has three children, ages 14 to 30. She reported that the early December win helped brighten an otherwise dreary weather month.

“It was a warm winter,” she said. “I didn’t feel the cold so much.”

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