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Oregon man claims record jackpot after finishing hunting trip

Dec 1, 2004, 8:26 am

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Oregon LotteryOregon Lottery: Oregon man claims record jackpot after finishing hunting trip

Halfway through a two-week hunting trip, Portland-area accountant Art Brenner went into the Eastern Oregon town of Madras for supplies.

He checked his lottery numbers while there and discovered that he had won the biggest Megabucks jackpot ever -- a prize of $30 million.

With that knowledge, Brenner went back to camp and kept hunting elk.

"I still had a week of hunting," he said, shrugging.

Brenner, 65, came forward Tuesday to claim the $30 million jackpot, more than two weeks after the Nov. 15 drawing.

"I'll probably build a house and invest the rest," Brenner said after turning in a ticket with all six winning numbers.

Before Tuesday, only a female relative who bought the ticket for Brenner knew of his good fortune, he told reporters at a news conference.

The relative, Susan Cox, bought the ticket the day before the drawing at a 7-Eleven in Milwaukie as the two were preparing to leave town for the hunting trip.

Cox told lottery officials that for the rest of the trip, she kept comparing the winning ticket to the printout of the winning Megabucks number.

"It's really hard to understand that you're holding such a ticket," she said.

A receptionist at Brenner's Milwaukie office said that she had been deluged with calls Tuesday from friends and clients about the jackpot. She couldn't tell them anything; she hadn't heard anything from her boss about winning the lottery.

Lottery winners can either receive 25 annual payments or a lump sum of half the total. Brenner chose the lump sum and left the Oregon Lottery offices in Salem with a check for $9.8 million after withholding for state and federal taxes.

"The annuity gets about 3 percent a year," he said. "I think I can get better than that."

He shared some of his good fortune with Cox, directing lottery officials to cut a second check worth $99,000 for her from his winnings. Brenner has been divorced for about 15 years and has no children.

Brenner has been playing the same numbers for 16 years and buys a ticket for each drawing.

"I just picked the numbers that seemed to come up over and over again," he said.

In this case, he played four sets of numbers for three drawings on a ticket that cost $6.

The accountant declined to say where he lives in Oregon, aside from saying that he is in the mid-Willamette Valley.

"I don't want the throngs of people looking me up," Brenner said.

And, for the record, Brenner did not bag an elk.

"I had a hard time concentrating," he said.

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12 comments. Last comment 16 years ago by CASH Only.
Page 1 of 1
urbossmanpimpin's avatar - batman49
Dallas, Texas
United States
Member #7272
September 28, 2004
179 Posts
Posted: December 1, 2004, 11:58 am - IP Logged

that cash amount after taxes was quite small.....

    twisted's avatar - underground
    New Jersey
    United States
    Member #2376
    September 25, 2003
    582 Posts
    Posted: December 1, 2004, 1:15 pm - IP Logged

    Oregon has a very high state tax. He still has to pay the remaining federal tax on the $9.8 million he is left with. Another 10% or so.

      fja's avatar - gnome1

      United States
      Member #91
      January 19, 2002
      15190 Posts
      Posted: December 1, 2004, 4:58 pm - IP Logged

      Its still some walking around money that he has left

      "Everybody has to believe in something...I believe I'll have another beer!"   = W.C.Fields 

        United States
        Member #379
        June 5, 2002
        11296 Posts
        Posted: December 1, 2004, 7:35 pm - IP Logged

        Could be that the Oregon Megabucks cash option is set at 50% of the annuity (artificially low) rather than according to interest rates.

          United States
          Member #7853
          October 15, 2004
          11350 Posts
          Posted: December 1, 2004, 8:57 pm - IP Logged

          i would've left the deer in them woods and headed straight home from the store if i knew i  won,i wouldn't have stuck around hunting wild animals......

            United States
            Member #3676
            February 10, 2004
            425 Posts
            Posted: December 2, 2004, 11:38 am - IP Logged

            Good for him, why rush home when your out on vacation enjoying yourself. With Oregons high payback %'s you get also the highest taxes, just shows you they get you one way or the other.


              United States
              Member #6676
              September 3, 2004
              95 Posts
              Posted: December 2, 2004, 12:27 pm - IP Logged

              does he not know about the high rate of accidental deaths through hunting?!?

              jeez man..i would have hired a body gaurd and trotted my arse back to home and then lottery office.



                United States
                Member #5387
                July 2, 2004
                28 Posts
                Posted: December 2, 2004, 8:53 pm - IP Logged

                And they say the rich don't pay there fair share of taxes. this is an example the rich do pay at least in Oregan.

                  luckylottolady's avatar - character catafly.jpg

                  United States
                  Member #6028
                  August 2, 2004
                  53 Posts
                  Posted: December 3, 2004, 3:11 am - IP Logged

                  i dont hunt,but if i was on a trip and found out i won ,i'd make an excuse and leave and go cash the ticket in. i'd be afraid i would accidentally get shot,someone might mistake you for a deer. or another psycho would come and shoot at me,like the one we hear about in the news.

                    United States
                    Member #379
                    June 5, 2002
                    11296 Posts
                    Posted: December 3, 2004, 3:31 pm - IP Logged

                    OR has an online game (somewhat like the new PA game everybody hates) with a "lifetime" top prize. However often the prize is paid (52k year? 13k every quarter?) the checks, after state and federal withholdings, probably aren't enough to retire on.

                      beltsville, md
                      United States
                      Member #2846
                      November 21, 2003
                      15 Posts
                      Posted: December 4, 2004, 5:34 pm - IP Logged

                      i think cox should have gotten more than a mere 99 thousand

                      dollars for taking the time to buy him the ticket and not shooting him in the back in the oregon woods and get the entire winnings herself. it is highly unlikely that anybody would have made a 'colombo' style connection between her winning of 30 million dollars and the accidental shooting to death of a hunter in the woods.

                      hit chaser...

                        United States
                        Member #379
                        June 5, 2002
                        11296 Posts
                        Posted: December 6, 2004, 4:33 pm - IP Logged

                        Good thing it wasn't "Lose for Life".