Marthasville couple Jim and Patty Grafrath celebrate their new windfall with family and friends at the Infield Sports Bar and Grill in Marthasville. The Grafaths matched all six Lotto numbers Jan. 2, netting a $2.3 million jackpot. They were the first Missouri Lottery winners of the new year.

Sarah Johnson Photo

When Jim Grafrath, Marthasville, bought a lottery ticket he had no idea he would start off the year as a wealthy man.

Grafrath, who said he doesn’t normally buy Lotto tickets, bought five Quick Picks at the Infield Sports Bar and Grill for the $2.3 million Jan. 2 drawing.

He and his wife Patty couldn’t believe they had actually won.

“I thought, ‘It can’t be true,’” he said. “I had my wife verify it. The odds were something like 1 in 3,500,000.”

Lottery winnings can either be distributed over a period of years or the winner can opt for one payment of a lesser value than the jackpot. Grafrath said he’s going to take the lump sum option, which he said will be about $900,000 after taxes.

So what is Grafrath going to do with his new windfall?

“I’m going to buy a new truck, a boat, pay off my house and make a few home improvements,” he said. “I’ve got six kids and 10 grandkids and all of them are going to benefit as well. I’m also looking at some lake property.”

Patty Grafrath said she’s going to spend some of the money as well.

“I’m going to take a trip to California to see my brother and sister,” she said. “I haven’t seen them in eight years.”

Grafrath, who retired eight years ago from AT&T in St. Louis, took his time going public with news of big win.