New multimillionaires get 1st lottery winnings

January 07, 1994|By Lan Nguyen | Lan Nguyen,Staff Writer

Maryland's newest lottery millionaires picked up their first checks yesterday at Owen Brown Liquor Store in Columbia, where they bought their winning $21 million ticket.

Columbia residents Catherine Helowicz and Timothy Udicious each received a check for $338,624 -- the amount left from an annual award of slightly over $1 million after state and federal taxes were taken out. They will receive checks for the next 19 years.

The couple held the only winning ticket in last month's $21 million Lotto jackpot, the largest since four years ago, when David Moreland of Lothian won the same amount.

The pair had bought $5 worth of tickets. The winning numbers were picked randomly by the computer.

Yesterday, the couple made a spirited appearance, talking and laughing with a handful of friends and family who had come to share in the festivities.

"Can we cash our ticket here?" Ms. Helowicz joked before lottery officials began the formal presentation to the waiting TV cameras.

"You should have given us your 1040 [tax] forms, too," quipped Mr. Udicious, whose mother, Agnes, came from New Jersey for the event.

Neither winner has yet made plans for the loot. They canceled a New Year's Eve party at their apartment after they won the jackpot, but have returned to their jobs at the Department of Defense, where fellow employees have been wishing them well.

"We're trying to keep things as normal as possible," Ms. Helowicz said. "It's been very exciting."

Mr. Udicious said he felt as if he had been under a "self-imposed diet. You lose the urge to eat. Other than that, it's been the same."

Owen Brown Liquor Store owner Jerry Gilbert also received a $9,000 check as a commission for issuing the winning ticket.

In July 1992, he was the lottery agent who received the first

commission check, after five secretaries who worked at the White House won roughly $1 million in a Lotto jackpot. He received $1,000 that time.

Outside his store in the Owen Brown Village Center hung a large "It happened here" banner.

"When you play, it's pure luck," he said. "But I really feel there are lucky places."

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