RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — A North Carolina man who immigrated to the United States will use some of his more than $250,000 in lottery winnings to help refugees in Myanmar.
North Carolina Education Lottery officials said Thursday that Ner Wah of New Bern won a Fast Play jackpot worth $267,513.
“I want to help my refugee people back in Burma,” Wah said. “They need a lot of help.”
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees says more than 500,000 people have been displaced inside Myanmar — also known as Burma — and 48,000 have fled to neighboring countries since the military took over the southeast Asian nation last February.
Wah, a 35-year-old who came to the U.S. 15 years ago, had never bought a Fast Play ticket before Tuesday when he spent $5 on one for the Rockin’ Bingo game at Klo Htoo Asian Market in New Bern.
“My friend was in there playing and he asked if I wanted to try it,” Wah said. “I just had a feeling in my mind like I was going to win something.”
He thought he won “enough to cover my groceries” but said his “hands and feet started tingling” when he realized he hit the jackpot.
He claimed his prize Wednesday and took home $189,962 after taxes were withheld.