$100K scratch-off win will give Moore County veterans wedding ceremony they missed 25 years ago

CARTHAGE, N.C. (WTVD) -- Retired Army Sgt. Carla Johnson, of Carthage, and her husband were planning to renew their vows in December, but can now use a $100,000 lottery prize to help pay for the ceremony they never had 25 years ago when she was deployed.

"At least we know the wedding is paid for in December now and we don't have to panic," Johnson said. "It was just a blessing."

Johnson and her husband were married in 1996, one day before she was deployed to serve in the Persian Gulf as a diesel mechanic. Johnson's husband is also retired after serving 23 years in the Army.

"We really didn't have a 'wedding,' wedding," Johnson said. "So now 25 years later we're actually able to have a wedding."

An easy way to increase your odds of hitting it big on scratch-off lottery tickets

On Friday, Johnson purchases a $20 Premier Cash scratch-off from J-Cash Mart on Carthage Street in Cameron. She waited until later that night to scratch it off and did not realize how much she won at first.

"I started to panic, and I just started screaming!" she said.

Johnson claimed her prize Monday at lottery headquarters in Raleigh.

After federal and state tax withholdings Johnson took home $70,756.

Johnson plans to give 10 percent of her prize to her church and then, after paying for her wedding, create a college fund for her four grandchildren.

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