It takes a serious amount of luck to walk out of a casino with fatter pockets than you rocked
up with, let alone as a freshly-made millionaire. But the stories of these plucky chancers –
who managed to land the biggest slot wins of all time – are proof that unbelievable,
seven-figure pay-outs can, and do, happen to ordinary people. . .
1) Megabucks Madness
It probably comes as no surprise that the greatest slot machine win to date took place in Las
Vegas, the glitzy gambling capital of the world.
In March 2003, a hopeful 25-year-old software engineer from Los Angeles strolled into the
Excalibur to put $100 in a popular Megabucks machine. Fortune was certainly smiling on
him that fateful day, as he struck a mind-blowing $39,710,826.36 jackpot! The lucky chap
opted to stay anonymous, perhaps choosing to let what happens in Vegas, stay in Vegas.
2) Defying the Odds
Before that big pay-out, the title of biggest-ever slot winner was held by Cynthia Jay-Brenan,
a lady who managed to defy incredible odds not just once, but twice.
In January 200, she struck a jackpot of just under $35 million by spinning on another
Megabucks machine. After walking out of the Desert Inn Resort a record-breaking
champion, she quickly married her partner and thought they would live happily ever after.
But her fortune quickly changed. Not long after her windfall, tragedy struck as a drunk driver
ploughed into Jay-Brenan’s car, shattering her spine. Whilst the collision left her confined to
a wheelchair for the rest of her life, Jay-Brenan is, undoubtedly, incredibly lucky to have
survived the 50-mph impact. Nevertheless, the highly superstitious were quick to put her
accident down to the curse of winning big.
3) Striking Gold in the Golden Years
Elmer Sherwood was one of the first players to walk inside The Mirage when it first opened
it’s doors in 1989. The unsuspecting old man had been touring across the States with his
wife in their trusty mobile home when the grand opening of the Vegas casino caught his
attention. Whilst the first $100 he staked that night proved unsuccessful, Sherwood asked
his wife for a cheeky extra $20. It was that jammy bill that saw him scope a $4.6 million
The couple lived modestly off the interest of their winnings. But sixteen years later, at the
ripe old age of 92, Sherwood had a flutter on the machines of Sin City once more – this time
managing to land $21 million at the Cannery Casino & Hotel! The kind-hearted old man
chose to donate most of his second windfall to charity, before he passed away aged 93.
4) Don’t Quit Whilst You’re Ahead
Reports of two big wins in one lifetime don’t end there. A retired flight attendant got lucky
with a $680,000 payout playing on iconic American slot, Wheel of Fortune. But this spirited
spinner wasn’t done with the slots yet. She continued to splash her winnings in the casinos
of Vegas, eventually scoping another impressive jackpot – this time $27 million!
Just goes to show that sometimes taking risks can pay off big time.
5) Master of the Online Slot
And these days, you don’t even need to step foot inside a casino to scope an eye-watering
win on the slots. Online video slots deliver the potential to strike it big right to the comfort of
your home – as 26-year-old Jonathon Heywood was pleased to find out.
Whilst most of the greatest slot wins have gone down in Vegas, the Cheshire-born soldier
managed to spin a £13,209,300 win on British soil! It stands as the biggest jackpot pay-out
on an online slot machine in history, as confirmed by Guinness World Records. Speaking
after his life-changing win, Heywood revealed one of the first things on his to-do list: replace
his humble Fiat Punto with a far-flashier Bentley Continental GT!