, Salem, MA


June 21, 2012

Methuen woman hits $10M scratch ticket

METHUEN — METHUEN — A 78-year-old woman who worked for congressmen and the Lawrence police and fire departments just hit the big time.

Helen Giarrusso hit the $10 million jackpot from a $10,000,000 Diamond Millionaire scratch ticket she bought from Rite Aid for $20.

According to the Massachusetts Lottery, she picked up her prize Tuesday.

“I don’t know what millions are,” she said yesterday. “But it feels good because I can take care of my family.”

Giarrusso worked as a secretary for two congressmen, F. Brad Morse and Paul Cronin, both Republicans. Afterward, she worked for the Lawrence Fire Department as a dispatcher and for the Lawrence Police Department.

Her late husband was a Lawrence firefighter, a son just retired from the Lawrence Fire Department, and a grandson works for the Methuen Fire Department. In all, she has two children, four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

She bought the ticket at Rite Aid at 176 Haverhill St. in Methuen. The store will also get a $50,000 commission on the jackpot.

“Giarrusso is the second player to claim a $10 million grand prize since the $10,000,000 Diamond Millionaire ticket debuted in September 2011,” said Beth Bresnahan, a spokesperson for the Lottery. “There are two more $10 million prizes remaining in the game. The odds of winning one of them are one in 5,544,000.”

She chose to take her prize as a lump sum of $6.5 million before taxes, Bresnahan said, and planned to put it in a trust. By law, the Lottery withholds 5 percent for Massachusetts taxes and 25 percent for federal taxes.


Follow Douglas Moser on Twitter @EagleEyeMoser. To comment on stories and see what others are saying, log on to

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News

Local News
  • Correction A story in Thursday's edition, "Woman takes cat nap in dog store," requires a correction. The incident occurred in a North Street laundromat next door to Kissable Paws, not in the pet salon. Kissable Paws does not have doors that lock automatically.

    April 18, 2014

  • 140417_SN_DLE_EARTHDAY7.jpg Carlton School 3rd Annual Earth Day Fest Photo Slideshow The Carlton School in Salem hosted its 3rd Annual Earth Day Fest in the cafeteria on Thursday evening. In addition to crafts and games, Ward Two Councilor Heather Famico and Ward Six Councilor Beth Gerard served as two judges for a recycled art competition while Whole Foods Market and Mass Auduban set up table to share some information and tips on how to "stay green" with the students.

    April 17, 2014

  • Bandits hit 2 Beverly banks over 2 days

    BEVERLY -- Brazen robbers hit two Beverly banks in less than 24 hours. A man was arrested in connection with Tuesday's robbery, while the suspect in yesterday's incident remains at large, police said. It has been some time since this North Shore city

    April 17, 2014

  • North Shore residents to run in 2014 Boston Marathon

    The Salem News asked those on the North Shore who are running this year's Boston Marathon to share their reasons for running. 

    If you're running the marathon this year, it's not too late to share why you're running. Send a brief paragraph, a photo of yourself and a link to your fundraising site (if applicable) to Cheryl Richardson at

    April 17, 2014

  • 140416_SN_KYU_BAKER_3 Time to raise our game SALEM -- Swampscott Republican Charlie Baker has worked in state government for years, had success in the private sector and ran for governor in 2010. But the question he hears most on the campaign trail: Why does he want to run again? Baker said he

    April 17, 2014 3 Photos