"When I played, I never actually thought I could win," Ruth admitted. "Just the idea of thinking I could…made it fun."
When Ruth was in sixth grade, he was diagnosed with leukemia. He's been in remission for seven years, and now said he wants to share his good fortune with those who have helped him wage that battle.
"As a cancer survivor, it is really important for me to give back," he said. "I want to 'pay forward' what some wonderful local organizations did for me, so I am definitely going to donate money to cancer organizations."
He told lottery officials he also plans to pay off his car and put money in the bank.
"I'll save up and buy something later down the road," Ruth said.
Lottery officials said Ruth's ticket is not the missing second-tier winner that they've been looking for from last March's Mega Millions drawing.
That ticket was purchased at a 7-Eleven in Timonium, and the holder only has until this Friday, Sept. 28, at 4:30 p.m. to cash it in before it becomes worthless.
That drawing was the Mega Millions prize that resulted in a split of part of the jackpot between three people in Maryland who came to be known as the "Three Amigos." They shared their portion of the prize — each getting about $218.6 million.