By Sgt. Logan Thomas
The Army and Air Force Exchange Service recognized two “Your Holiday Bill is On Us” contest winners Feb. 26 at the main exchange.
Retired Sgt. 1st Class Jeffrey Gallagher received a second prize award of $1,000 Military Star statement credit, and retired Marine Sgt. Allen Michaels received a third prize of $500 credit.
According to Gallagher, he was surprised to hear he won.
“At first I thought it was a joke,” he said. “I didn’t know there was a contest, I just use my star card all the time.”
During the 2019 holiday season, shoppers throughout the world were automatically entered into the sixth-annual “Your Holiday Bill is On Us” sweepstakes every time they used their Military Star card.
According to Beth Pritchard, Fort Leonard Wood Post Exchange general manager, thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of entries were submitted, and 40 winners were selected.
Out of the 40 winners, the prizes were divided into three categories.
Five grand-prize, 10 second-prize and 25 third-prize winners were selected from the entries. Grand-prize winners had their entire Military Star card balance paid off or a $2,500 credit if their balance was less than that. Second-prize winners received a $1,000 credit, and third-prize winners received a $500 credit.
According to the exchange website, almost $200,000 have been awarded since the contest began in 2014.
“I was pretty excited when I won,” Michaels said. “I mean, it’s really cool because I wasn’t expecting anything, I was just using the star card — I got really, really lucky. Who couldn’t use $500 bucks?”