You might call it "shear" luck.
Nine women who work together at A Shear Delight in Hanover Park will split $1 million after snagging one of the winning tickets from the Illinois Lottery's Halloween Millionaire Raffle.
"My first reaction was there's just no way," said Donna Carman, owner of the beauty salon. "It takes a long time for something like that to sink in."
Most of the co-workers, who live in Bartlett, Bloomingdale, Elk Grove Village, Hanover Park, Hoffman Estates, Huntley and Roselle, gathered Monday at the beauty salon for the ceremonial oversized check presentation. They'll each receive about $111,000 before taxes.
Lorraine Smith has been organizing Lottery pools for each salon she's worked at over the past two decades. When A Shear Delight opened four years ago, she again set up a system where everyone contributes $2 a week and takes turn buying the tickets. They mix up both the games they play and the places they patronize to purchase the tickets.
This time around it was Margo Tellone's turn, but the errand slipped her mind.
"I gave her the money when she was visiting her mother in Tinley Park thinking it was someplace different to buy the ticket," Smith said. "But she forgot to get it there."
Fortunately for the group, Tellone stopped at 4T Liquor Corral in Streamwood before the drawing took place. The store, located at 1004 E. Irving Park Road, will receive a $10,000 bonus for selling the winning ticket.
Tickets for the raffle cost $20. There were 509 winners in total, including three other $1 million winners.
Smith found out their ticket was a winner while sitting at her husband's bedside. He was in the hospital recovering from major surgery, and his visitors were looking for something to do.
"I asked my daughter's boyfriend to look it up on my iPad, and at first I thought we had won $1,000," Smith said. "Then I realized there were a few more zeros, but I couldn't scream being in the hospital."
Smith plans to use the money for bills, helping out her children and other odds and ends, while Carman will use it to make one big payment.
"This will allow me to completely pay off the loan I took out for the salon," Carman said. "God, what a relief."