LEMOYNE (AP) - When Ronald Shuey learned that he and his co-workers won the lottery in 1987, he imagined himself buying a shiny black Jaguar.
Sheri Charney started planning her new house.
Connie Connolly's husband thought he could buy a fancy boat.
Many were too excited to sleep the night of Oct. 21, 1987. The next morning, the 17 employees of the former Herman Avenue Elementary School in Lemoyne celebrated with coffee, doughnuts and fruit in the teachers lounge. Don't all lottery winners dream?
"It was surreal," recalled Deb Rundall of Lewisberry, then a first grade teachers.
Then, the winners got a dose of reality. They learned that their shared $1 million plus Super 7 lottery jackpot would be paid out over 25 years.
The annual $59,150.97 group payment would be reduced to $47,320.78 after Uncle Sam took a hefty 20 percent or $11,830.19. Each winner would get a $2,783.57 annual check, $231 a month. Suddenly, their dreams weren't quite in reach.
Everyone thought we were going to be millionaires," said Rebecca Hedden of Fairview Township, then a first grade teacher. "We weren't. Nobody quit their jobs. But every October, we got our checks."
Group members, dubbed "The Herman Avenue Super 7teen," reminisced Sunday about their experience during a party hosted by Hedden. Members were to receive their final check on Monday.
Shuey said the group began buying lottery tickets in September 1986. The late Frank Diehl, school custodian, used to collect the lottery money and buy tickets on Tuesdays.
"Each of us would pay $5 a week, which was a lot in 1987," Hedden said. "Each of us would pick numbers for one of the tickets."
The group won with numbers picked by Connolly, who lives in Monroe Twp. and now is South Middleton School District director of special education.
"The day I picked the winning numbers, Frank was in a hurry when he stopped by to see me during a planning period," said Connolly, then a special-education teacher. "I picked my birthday and my husband's. Frank said, 'Just circle anything,' and that's what I did. I didn't give it another thought and I didn't watch the drawing."
Later that night, members began calling one another with news of their victory. Connolly thought her friends "were just yanking my chain." Her husband, however, took the news seriously.
"Tom was all excited," she said. "He wanted to buy a boat until he found out that it wasn't enough money."
Shuey said that his imagination "ran wild" when he heard of the win. He pictured himself in a shiny black Jaguar.
Charney, then a second-grade teacher and now a first-grade teacher at York Haven Elementary School, said she "thought we hit it big. I wanted to go out and buy a new house."
Cecelia Lyden of Camp Hill, then an art teacher, hadn't had the chance to pay Diehl $5 for her share before the winning ticket was bought. She said that he had paid her share, then reminded her after the win that she owed him $5.
Some of the winners had more practical dreams. Rundall and Larry Foose of Duncannon, then a third-grade teacher, each bought a piano for their families. Charney said she still uses the money for Christmas shopping. Others spoke of getting carpeting and kitchen appliances.
The group wore blue sweatshirts with a "Herman Avenue Super 7teen" logo when they received their award from lottery officials. They arranged for the West Shore Teachers Federal Credit Union to receive the annual payment and split it 17 ways.
Then, then went back to school.
"We didn't become millionaires," Foose said. "But this money has been a nice little bonus each year."