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11 Lehighton school employees win $3.2M in lottery

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Published May 15. 2019 08:50AM


A group of Lehighton Area School District employees, like many who play the lottery on a regular basis, had gotten used to minimal success.

Having played for two years, the largest amount the group had won on any single ticket was $78.

That all changed last Thursday night, when 11 LASD employees, who call themselves the “Lucky Lehighton Ladies,” hit the Pennsylvania Lottery Match 6 jackpot for $3.2 million.

“I just didn’t believe it when I checked the numbers online that night,” said Karla Costenbader-Kovach, who purchased the ticket the day before at Giant Food Store in Lehighton. “I had my son, who is in eighth grade, double check it and we started yelling, but I had to be careful because I realized we were alone there with this ticket and I didn’t want anyone outside to hear us. I was really surprised it was $3.2 million because the Match 6 jackpot isn’t usually that high.”

The winning group is comprised of four Lehighton teachers, two cafeteria workers and five paraprofessionals. With Friday being an in-service day in the district, the group got together and went in three different vehicles to a lottery office Allentown to sign official forms.

“It was a little chaotic at the beginning because we had some people who wanted to get a lawyer and some who just wanted to take the ticket in right away,” Kovach said. “In the end, we didn’t get a lawyer involved because that would have taken away some of the winnings from everyone.”

After taxes, the winners are figuring on taking home between $180,000 and $190,000 each, although that figure has yet to be finalized. For Kovach, there won’t be any lavish vacations as she describes herself as more of a “homebody.”

“I’m going to invest some of it and maybe do some home improvements,” she said.

As for the rest of the group, they also plan to “play it smart.”

“One of them said she plans on taking her granddaughter on vacation and we have one who is already retiring so that will be nice.”

Each person in the lottery pool chipped in $5 per week with any winnings being rolled over for more tickets. They didn’t always play the Match 6, Kovach said, but found they were winning, albeit small totals, more often with that game.

With any group lottery winning story comes a tale of heartbreak and it’s no different for the LASD crew.

“We had four people who had originally played with us who dropped out,” Kovach said. “I know one was pretty heartbroken, but all of them were very happy for us. There were absolutely no hard feelings. We all work together and it’s a great group.”

The group plans to take a break from the lottery pool, but Kovach said she plans to keep playing on her own.

“I’ll use some of my winnings to keep playing,” she said. “You never know what will happen.”


Congratulations, good karma indeed.

Given the incredible odds, truly a blessed crew of good friends.


Citizen David F. Bradley Sr.
Listen to Bradley - looking for some legal defense money to cover his big mouth. BRADLEY MUST GO! Good ole' citizen Bradley, take a hike.
What a scumbag. Can’t you just be happy for these people and not bring your warped sensibilities and local politics into it? Wouldn’t be surprised if you used this as a way to justify eliminating their jobs.
Citizens of Lehighton

Everyone knows what has been going on with the Lehighton School Board, they do not listen to the people, they do not care what you have to say.

The primaries are important, it puts people you want on the ticket for the November election. You won’t have to worry about your job being threatened, you won’t have to worry about retaliation for your views, your voice can be heard at the voting booth.

It is time to rid Lehighton of the bullies, you know who they are, and luckily none of them won the lottery.

Now is the time for change, get out and vote on Tuesday.
Ugh, not Szucs. She was a miserable tyrant when I was in school, and did not belong around young people. She may have damaged the mental well-being of many kids. Glad to know this is the last year of her long reign of terror.

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