James Balci wins $5,200 playing Pick 4
James Balci of Hammond was all smiles after winning $5,200 on two Louisiana Lottery Pick 4 tickets for the Sept. 1 drawing when the numbers 1-0-8-2 were drawn.“It is a little help for me to pay some bills and help my daughter,” he said.After moving to Hammond from Turkey 25 years ago, Balci said he worked as a C-class pipefitter until the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Balci was excited for the monetary help from his Pick 4 win during these tough times.Balci said he likes to play Pick 3 and Pick 4 games sparingly as a way of having a bit of fun, but this wasn’t the first time he’s won big.“Two years ago I won almost $10,000 playing Pick 4 straight!” he exclaimed. “I don’t go crazy. If I win, I win. If I lose, I lose.”Balci purchased his winning tickets at the RaceTrac on Highway 190 and the Winn-Dixie Store on W. Thomas, both in Hammond. He played his numbers straight/box meaning he could win by matching them in exact order or any order to win a prize; both of his tickets won straight for a $2,600 prize on each ticket.Lottery ticket purchasers must be at least 21 years of age. Draw-style game tickets must be claimed within 180 days of the drawing. Anyone who may have a gambling problem or friends and family of anyone with a gambling problem should call toll free 1-877-770-7867 for help.For security purposes, the Lottery strongly encourages players to sign the back of their tickets immediately after purchasing. More information about Pick 4 and other winners can be found on the Lottery’s website, www.louisianalottery.com/pick-4.