"I never won anything," Sharon said. "I just kept thinking, 'I'm just not going to do this anymore.'"
Earlier this month, the years of sending letters through the mail with the hope of receiving a big payoff finally came true for the former Clay County resident.
Donath, who lived in Brazil for nearly 40 years, won $1,000 through Publishers Clearing House May 11.
She received her payoff after learning her husband had won a bet while fishing with friends in Tennessee.
"I told him, 'I got you beat,'" Sharon said. "He could not believe that I actually finally won."
Donath said members of the Publishers Clearing House organization arrived in Mooresville and went to a local flower shop. From there, they purchased roses, balloons and decorated a van with their logos and proceeded to her home.
"You open the door, there's the roses, the balloons, the nice people, you're going 'Oh my,'" Donath said. "You know how your brain goes numb? You're going, 'OK, it's really them.'"
Sharon and her husband Don lived on Chicago Street while in Clay County. Her husband was born and raised in Brazil. But the family moved close to seven years ago to be closer to the Indianapolis International Airport because of Don's work. In addition, Sharon said they wanted to be closer to grandchildren, who live in Zionsville.
After winning the money, Sharon said she had several family members and friends who finally believed in the sweepstakes.
"I've had so many people say they've never known anyone who won," she said. "I said, 'Now you do.' It's not a scam.
"My daughter said, 'Well mom, you just made enough to pay for all the stamps you used for 27 years.' First of all, they didn't believe me."
Sharon said the roses have since wilted since the big payday, but the balloons still have some air in them.
And she still has the oversized check Publishers Clearing House representatives gave to her.
"That's something you don't get rid of," she said.
She put the prize money in the bank and right after her big payday, she went right back to play.
"I already have three more entries in," Sharon said. "I thought, 'Why not.'"