A 28-year-old woman got out of the path of Hurricane Irma late last Friday night from her home in Ocoee, Florida. Tiffany Hatfield drove with her three young daughters through the night in heavy traffic along with other evacuees. She headed to a friend's house in Virginia.

Early Saturday morning, she stopped at a convenience store in Rocky Mount, North Carolina so she and her girls could stretch their legs. While there, she purchased two $5 scratch-off tickets, and to her surprise one of the tickets was a $10,000 winner.

At first, she thought she was looking at it wrong until her oldest daughter looked at it and started screaming. A few seconds later, all four of them were screaming.

Timeline of Tiffany's fate

Hatfield had not planned to evacuate until her husband, who is in the Navy and stationed in Hawaii, called her and insisted that she and the children leave Florida.

Because of her husband's insistence, Tiffany packed a few things and put the kids in the car and left home around 10 p.m. on Friday night. She drove throughout the night and stopped when she saw a convenience store in the middle of nowhere.

Because it was the weekend, the state's lottery offices were closed. She put the lottery ticket in her wallet and kept checking it during the weekend. She still could not believe it was a winning ticket.

On Tuesday, the Hatfields headed back to their home in Florida after they heard the coast was clear. On their way, they stopped by a lottery office in Greenville, North Carolina. When the ticket was turned in, Hatfield accepted a check for $6,951 after federal and state taxes were taken out.

Florida house

Tiffany had just moved to Florida from Connecticut in June. She wanted to live near her family while her husband was stationed far away.

When she returned to her house, she discovered that there was no electricity and her house had only minor damage. There was a fallen tree in the yard and some flooding. She said she is going to use the money to fix up the house.

When she left home in a hurry on Friday night, Tiffany had no idea her luck would change so quickly. She also had no idea a winning Diamond Dazzler scratch-off lottery ticket was waiting for her and her girls in North Carolina.

As far as the damage to her house is concerned, she knows it could have been much worst because some residents in surrounding communities had far more damage to their property.

She is glad her husband insisted that she evacuate because she had not planned to do so initially.

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