Greetings once again to all of you out there in PCHblog-land! If you recall my last article on classic winning moments, I mentioned that I’ve watched a lot of videos – close to 7,000 in fact – so when I say that these are some of the most classic winning moments, well, you really just have to take my word for it!
Of course, there are hundreds of others that I just don’t have the room to share – like August 2009 million-dollar winner Stephanie Gornichec who, after realizing that it was really real, said to Dave, “You have no idea what this just did to our lives.” Or 1999 winner Margaret Baker who, after winning $100,000 at age 73, said, “I feel like I could do the Irish jig, even with my two knees, and my new hip, and my heart valve.”
Did you know that 2018 is the 30th anniversary of the Prize Patrol? With that in mind, let’s take a look at four classic winning moments – one from each decade of the Prize Patrol changing lives forever.
Thelma Seidenburg, New Hampshire, 1988, $10,000
Shortly after the newly formed Prize Patrol made its first-ever delivery in Texas, they were back on the road. This time, they were off to New Hampshire to present Thelma Seidenberg with $10,000. It’s been said that a great shock can make someone weak in the knees, and Thelma sure was shocked to meet Dave Sayer.
Martha McMillen, Missouri, 1996, $1,000,000
The awarding of a $1,000,000 SuperPrize to Martha McMillen has become one of the most famous in PCH lore – and with good reason. Of course, this was neither the first time nor would it be the last time that the Prize Patrol arrived at a winner’s residence only to find they weren’t home. On occasion, another family member is home – in this case, Martha’s daughter, Courtney – and the making of a priceless winning moment unfolds before you.
Doris Gray, New Jersey, 2009, $5,000 A Week For Life
Doris Gray’s win in 2009 is special for a number of reasons. Believe it or not, but Doris was the first SuperPrize winner to have entered online at PCH.com. Her win also is a testament to the power of the family and the community to rally together and make a winning moment into something even more spectacular. Now, what you won’t see in this video is the Prize Patrol arriving at Doris’ home only to find out she was at work as a math teacher at P.S. 12 in Paterson, N.J. With the assistance of Doris’ husband, Willie, the Prize Patrol contacted the school’s principal, who quickly arranged to have the lunch room packed with students and other teachers. What came next is pure PCH magic.
Penny Pompa, Connecticut, 2014, $1,000,000
Penny Pompa quickly became a fan favorite after accepting her million-dollar prize in 2014. Penny truly is a shining example of what it means to be a fan of Publishers Clearing House. She never gave up despite the odds she was facing, which included a diagnosis of Lyme disease, having to quit her job because she was always sick, and being on the verge of losing her house. The night before her award, Penny went to bed praying for a miracle. In the morning, one arrived. As Penny said, “This is truly a miracle.”
It’s been estimated that there have been more than 2,000 Prize Patrol deliveries during the past 30 years and with PCH giving away more and more money every year, things don’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. So, keep entering because your classic winning moment could be just a few clicks away.