Man gets unlikely "Birthday Surprise"

Published 03/14 2013 06:13PM

Updated 03/18 2013 02:24PM

SPRINGFIELD -- A Central Illinois man is having an extra special birthday celebration this year. Ryan Kreoger is the first winner in the state's Birthday Surprise Game.

He won $150,000 instantly from the scratch-off game, plus an additional $150,000 a year on his birthday for the next 20-years. His winnings total more than $3 million. 

The Kreogers say they could barely make ends meet before their big win and are still in shock.

"I thought, 'huh, okay Lord, please let this be something good,' and when I scratched that off and seen the $150,000 a year for 20 years, I just didn't know what to think. My heart stopped and I started shaking really bad," said Ryan.

Ryan installs cable and internet for a living, while his wife, Heather, stays at home with their five children. They're using the money to buy two used car and a house. They also plan to splurge on a honeymoon along "Route 66."


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