DENVER – Toni Bower made the family proud Friday. The Littleton elementary school teacher won a new Ford Fusion hybrid for her father-in-law in a Colorado Lottery second-chance drawing. Toni Bower was actually filling in for Gary Bower, a finalist for the drawing who couldn’t attend because of work commitments.

“When he first asked me to stand in, I thought, ‘Are you sure you want me?’” said Toni Bower. “My daughter broke her leg and weeks before that she broke her wrist and then my dog had to have surgery.  I haven’t had great luck.”

But Bower’s luck changed Friday. The drawing’s six finalists gathered at Phil Long Ford in Denver and were given numbered keys that corresponded to six new Ford Fusions. The finalists were then told to get in the cars and start their engines. Bower’s was the only key that worked.

“I was in disbelief for a half a second and then I was relieved,” said Bower of hearing her car start.

Bower said it will be up to her father-in-law to decide whether to keep the car or take the alternative prize of $35,000 in cash instead. She said she hopes the car will stay in the family, since her teenage daughter will be driving soon.

This isn’t the first time Gary Bower has won a big Lottery prize. More than 20 years ago, he won $80,000 playing Lotto and used it to throw a big birthday for his ailing mother.

The 2010 Hybrid Drawing was the most popular second-chance drawing in Colorado Lottery history. From March 22, 2010 to June 30, 2010, the Lottery invited players to submit non-winning Scratch tickets into a second-chance drawing for a Ford Fusion. Nearly 788,000 entries were received for the drawing. The six finalists were chosen in a drawing on July 1, 2010. All finalists received tickets to a Colorado Rockies game, $100 worth of Scratch tickets and a gift bag worth more than $100.

Proceeds from the Colorado Lottery’s games – Lotto, Powerball, Cash 5, Scratch, MatchPlay and Mega Millions stay in Colorado to improve the quality of life in the state. The Lottery has returned more than $2.2 billion to the state of Colorado since it was established. Through Great Outdoors Colorado, the Conservation Trust Fund and Colorado State Parks, the Lottery has provided funding for new trails, precious open space and wildlife protection.


Erika Gonzalez
PHONE 303.759.6872  | CELL 303.945.9724


July 16, 2010
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