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Six Iowans claimed lottery prizes of at least $1 million in 2023.

Earl Lape of Dubuque tops the list of big winners this year. The retired mechanic won a $40.03 million Lotto America jackpot — the game’s largest prize ever — on April 1 and claimed it 10 days later.

He took the cash option of $21.28 million and said he planned to invest much of the money to help generations of his family to come, according to a news release from lottery officials. He also planned to donate a portion to Blank Children’s Hospital in Des Moines and the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital in Iowa City.

“If it weren’t for our parents to show us the way, where would we be? That’s why I want to help kids,” Lape said in the release. “A lot of parents don’t have money, and a lot of insurance companies don’t cover it, but the kids still need treatment.”

Video above: What happens to unclaimed lottery tickets in Iowa?

Prizes above $250,000 must be claimed in person at the Iowa Lottery headquarters in Clive.

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Here’s the list of Iowa’s largest lottery prizes since Jan. 1, 2023.

Iowa’s top lottery prizes of 2023

$21.3 million: Earl Lape of Dubuque claimed the Lotto America prize on April 11, 2023. He bought the ticket at Eichman’s in Dubuque.

$2 million: Megan Balmer of Garwin claimed the Powerball prize on July 11, 2023. She bought the ticket at a Casey’s store in Gladbrook.

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$2 million: Tammy Gordy of Ottumwa claimed the Powerball prize on June 26, 2023. She bought the ticket at a Hy-Vee convenience store in Ottumwa.

$1 million: Michael Hoogerwerf of Davenport claimed the Mega Millions prize on July 17, 2023. He bought the ticket at Smokin’ Joe’s in Davenport.

$1 million: Coworkers Randy Ferriss of Nevada and Colton Snyder of Huxley claimed the Mega Millions prize on April 20, 2023. They told lottery officials they’ve pooled their money together often over the years, according to a news release.

$1 million: Marla Ballard of Des Moines claimed her Mega Millions prize on March 16, 2023. She bought the ticket at a Des Moines Quik Trip store.

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$500,000 Cash winners

Five Iowans won $500,000 in the $500,000 Cash scratch game. Those winners include:

  • James Briggs of Knoxville
  • John Dojiok of Denison
  • Ca Tin Sang of Clive
  • Carolyn Carson of Iowa Falls
  • Justin Strother of Davenport

Iowa’s largest unclaimed prizes

There are two unclaimed $2 million prizes in Iowa as of Dec 13. Both are Powerball winners — one ticket sold in Tiffin for the Oct. 7 drawing, and the other sold in Clinton for the Nov. 25 drawing.

The next biggest unclaimed prizes in Iowa are three $50,000 Powerball winners — one sold in Adel and two sold in Des Moines.

Iowa’s biggest lottery jackpot winners

  • 2018: Lerynne West of Redfield, $343.9 million Powerball
  • 2012: The Shipping 20 (co-workers at Cedar Rapids Quaker Oats plant), $241 million Powerball
  • 2012: Brian and Mary Lohse of Bondurant, $202.1 million Powerball
  • 2006: Tim and Kellie Guderian of Fort Dodge, $200.8 million Powerball
  • 2006: Hugh Hawkins of Des Moines, $113.2 million Powerball
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