Reno woman hits $33 million jackpot

SPARKS (AP) " A 38-year-old Reno woman who originally planned to spend a quiet Easter at home is $33 million richer after hitting the second largest Megabucks jackpot in history at a Sparks casino.

Rachael Renee Romanick hit the jackpot Sunday night at Terrible's Rail City, according to International Game Technology, the maker of the progressive slot machines.

The mother of four said she had only been playing the machine for about 10 minutes when she landed the big prize. She said she initially had no idea how much she had won.

"I had to ask someone if this was for real. I kind of froze because this was so unexpected," Romanick said.

"I really owe it to my friend," she said. "I wanted to stay home, but he wanted to gamble at Rail City and convinced me to join him. I said to myself, 'Why not? If you're gonna win big, you have to play big and take a chance."'

The largest jackpot ever won was $39.7 million at the Excalibur Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas in March 2003.

"We are very pleased to have a local winner for the second largest jackpot in IGT history," said Ed Rogich, IGT vice president of marketing. "This is truly monumental and will be a life-altering prize for Rachael and her family."

Romanick's big win marks the first Megabucks jackpot to be hit at Terrible's Rail City Casino, which is owned by Herbst Gaming.

"We pride ourselves on being a true local's casino and the fact that a local player won at our property is very exciting," said Barry Phillips, vice president and general manager of Terrible's Rail City Casino.

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