GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Ten more winners of the MI Shot to Win Sweepstakes were announced Tuesday, each of them taking home $50,000 after entering daily drawings corresponding to the date they got their first dose.
The first winner, who was vaccinated July 7, is Leslie Boney of West Bloomfield.
The July 8 winner is Johnathon Barraw of Traverse City. In a prerecorded statement, Barraw said he got his shot at a local Meijer because he was sick of wearing a mask all day and to help protect his two young children.
“The only thing I can say is don’t wait. Take your shot, literally,” Barraw said. “This is the way for all of us to keep fighting, to keep living, for all of us to help our community.”
The July 9 winner is Mikayla Alexander of Detroit.
The July 10 winner is Erika Smith of Flint. Smith said she got the shot because her obstetrician recommended it, ensuring her it was safe for her unborn child.
“Take the leap,” she urged others. “Just do it.”
She said she’ll use the prize money to help cover expenses while she goes through school for the next two years.
The July 11 winner is Majid Al-hacham of Dearborn Heights. Al-hacham is a truck driver so he’s on the road, but his wife said in a video statement said they both got vaccinated on the same day to protect their children and community. She said winning the sweepstakes was a “big, beautiful surprise” and that they’re going to use the money to help pay off her student loans and buy a home.
She said her cousin, who was only 34, died last month after contracting COVID-19.
“I encourage everyone to get their vaccine because it is safe and keep your family and your community safe,” she said. “We did our part, so do your part, please.”
The July 12 winner is Anthony Carroll of Detroit. He said he got vaccinated to protect himself, his mother and his young nieces and nephews. He said all the data he could find showed him that getting the shot was safe and “the most compassionate thing that we can do for our neighbors.”
“Just do the right thing,” he said. “Get vaccinated.”
The July 13 winner is Jonelle Shannon of Grand Rapids, the July 15 winner is Jacqueline Mabee of Allegan, the July 16 winner is Clara Jekel of Holland and the July 17 winner is Ke’Lexis Love of Flint.
The July 14 winner has not yet been announced as paperwork is still being processed. That winner is expected to be announced next week.
Upper Peninsula native and “Real World” star Norman Korpi of Ironwood and Miss Michigan 2021 Vivian Zhong of Northville joined Protect Michigan Commission Director Kerry Ebersole Singh for the Tuesday afternoon virtual press conference announcing the winners.
The goal of the sweepstakes is to increase the state’s vaccination rate to 70% of residents age 16 and older. As of Monday, 63.2% of Michigan residents — or more than 5.1 million people — age 16 and older have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
Officials say more than 2.2 million people entered the sweepstakes to win cash prizes and nearly 98,000 young people ages 12 to 17 entered to win one of nine college scholarships. To enter, you can go to mishottowin.com or call the Michigan COVID-19 hotline at 888.535.6136 and press 1. Those between the ages of 12 and 17 must be registered by a parent.
Ebersole Singh urged people to hurry up and get vaccinated so they can register to win one of the daily drawings, which continue through July 30, or the $2 million grand prize, which will be drawn in early August. The winner of an earlier $1 million prize was a Grand Blanc woman.
“The safe, effective vaccines keep you, your family and your community and the most vulnerable safe from COVID-19,” said Ebersole Singh, whose Protect Michigan Commission is in charge of encouraging residents of the state to get vaccinated.
She urged those who are nervous or have questions about the vaccine to reach out to their doctor for answers.