A woman remembered that she purchased a lottery ticket, which turned out to be a winner, only hours before the ticket was set to expire.

Karen Gentry of Alexandria, Va., just happened to see a news report that a Virginia Cash 5 winning ticket worth $100,000 was only hours from expiring, reported Yahoo. The television reporter asked viewers, "Would you leave a $100,000 lying around on your coffee table for anyone to grab? One Virginia Lottery player may be unknowingly doing just that."

Gentry remembered that she'd bought a ticket a few months back and dug it out. It was a winner.

By law, lottery tickets expire 180 days after the drawing.

Biggest U.S. lottery jackpots

POSTED: 09:21 AM MST Nov 28, 2012    UPDATED: 02:35 PM MDT Jul 07, 2016 

Friday's Mega Millions jackpot, currently at $540 million, would be the third largest in the history of the game. But where does it rank overall in the top 10 all-time U.S. lottery jackpots?

Mega Millions Lottery Tickets
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Michael Cary/CNN

Friday's Mega Millions jackpot, currently at $540 million, would be the third largest in the history of the game. But where does it rank overall in the top 10 all-time U.S. lottery jackpots? Click on to find out.