F'ville man wins $1 million in scratch off game

Albert "Al" Nanni is the fifth New York Lottery millionaire from Onondaga County in two months.

The 77-year-old Fayetteville resident hit the jackpot on the Emerald 8s instant scratch-off game, which he paid $5 to play. The Lottery's Gretchen Dizer presented him with a ceremonial $1 million check last week at DeWitt Wegmans, where Nanni bought the winning ticket.

"I go to Wegmans every day to shop and play my daily numbers," said Nanni, who, in the past, has won a few smaller prizes on the same game. "You can imagine my surprise when I saw the word jackpot."

Nanni came up with a lottery slogan, too, which he shared at the Aug. 25 event: "No scratch, no cash!"

The prize, which he claimed the same day he purchased the game, will be paid as $50,000 a year for 20 years. Nanni will receive an annual net check totaling just over $33,000 through 2029.

When asked how he plans to spend the money, Nanni responded that his family comes first.

"My son is very dear to me. He is my 'Rock of Gibraltar,' so I will certainly share my good fortune with him," he said. "Other than that, I have no idea how I'll spend the money. It's all still sinking in."

He mentioned he might take a couple mini vacations to Canada or New York City, but said life would essentially remain unchanged.

Nanni, who likes karaoke, sang a few bars of Sinatra prior to cutting his congratulatory cake. His plans for that evening included a possible nap and attending a late gig with his son.

"Hey, it doesn't start till 9:30 p.m.," he said. "I'm usually in bed by 8!"

A retired fork lift operator from New Process Gear (formerly New Process Venture), Nanni has more in common with previous winners than just a bigger bank account. On June 22, three co-workers from the same company hit a $26 million Mega Millions jackpot.

"This is a pretty lucky county," Dizer said.

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