Retired New York School Principal Wins $326 Mega Millions Jackpot
A retired New York elementary school principal is a millionaire, three times over. Harold Diamond of Sullivan County was the sole winner of the $326 Mega Millions jackpot and he can thank his wife for winning.
Diamond, a 39-year veteran of the Monticello School District who served as Principal at George L. Cook Elementary in Monticello before retiring in 1995, bought the winning ticket at the Valero on Route 302 in Middletown after stopping to eat at his wife's insistence.
'I put the ticket in my wallet and forgot about it. I went to play golf the next day and the guys were talking about the jackpot-winning ticket someone bought at a Valero on Route 302 and I thought, wait a minute – I bought a ticket there last night!' Diamond says.
Diamond rushed home and saw the six numbers drawn matched the second set of Quick Pick numbers printed on his ticket making him the sole winner of the largest jackpot ever claimed in New York.
'I was in a dither; a real daze' he recalled.
Diamond took the cash value of the prize, with a single lump sum of $197,456,087 or $130,676,438 after taxes. He's been working with a financial advisor to plan for what comes next because 'I simply can’t envision that kind of money,' he joked. He does plan on helping his family and 'giving back to the community.'
Diamond’s win marks the 29th time a New Yorker has won the top prize on the multi-state mega jackpot game, which launched in 2002.