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Air Force vet wins $6.5 million after nearly throwing away winning lottery ticket

Aug 3, 2019, 1:27 pm

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Oregon LotteryOregon Lottery: Air Force vet wins $6.5 million after nearly throwing away winning lottery ticketRating:

Air Force veteran William Bowker, 94, almost let a fortune slip right out of his hands.

Bowker often plays the lottery. But when his granddaughter checked his latest lottery ticket for him, she mistakenly thought it was a Mega Millions ticket instead of an Oregon Megabucks ticket.

Luckily, Bowker double-checked — and it paid off.

"She thought it was a Mega Million ticket, and started circling matching numbers on the ticket," Bowker said. "But they were for the wrong game. I had an Oregon's Game Megabucks ticket. She got done, and later, I thought I should double-check it before throwing it away. I am glad I did. I immediately thought — BOOM! I won!"

Turns out one line of numbers on the ticket, without a single number circled, included the winning numbers. His winning numbers were 14-32-41-43-44-47.

"You can still see where she circled the wrong numbers!" he said.

The first thing the 94 -year-old Bowker did was call a family meeting to discuss the prize and how to use it. In fact, his daughter is a tax attorney, and Bowker plans to share his prize among his family members. He opted to take the bulk sum payment of $3.25 million. After taxes he took home $2.2 million.

"I have what I need, and I'm 94," he said. "This is a wonderful way to help my family."

Bowker purchased the ticket at the Jackson's Food Store on SE 82nd Ave. in Happy Valley and used quick pick numbers. His $5 ticket had 10 numbers and, in addition to the $6.5 million jackpot, he also won a free Megabucks ticket. Jackson's officials said they were very excited about selling the winning ticket and that it's the largest ticket they have sold in Oregon so far. The company will receive a 1-percent selling bonus totaling $65,000 for selling the winning ticket.

"Jacksons is thrilled for our customer to have won the lottery, and we are happy to be the retailer to sell the winning Oregon's Game Megabucks ticket," said Katrina Lemmon, advertising and promotions manager for Jacksons Food Stores. "We are especially happy to find out the winner is a retired Air Force Pilot."

During the 2015-17 biennium, more than $55 million in Oregon Lottery proceeds were directed to economic development, parks, education and watershed enhancement in Clackamas County, where Bowker lives and purchased the ticket. Since 1985, Oregon Lottery players have won more than $38 billion in prizes.

The Oregon Lottery reminds players to always sign the back of their Lottery tickets, regardless of the game. In the event of winning a jackpot, they should consult with a trusted financial planner or similar professional to develop a plan for their winnings. Prize winners of more than $50,000 are advised to contact the Lottery office and schedule an appointment to claim their prize.

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15 comments. Last comment 1 year ago by mikeintexas.
Page 1 of 2
cottoneyedjoe's avatar - cuonvFT

United States
Member #197033
March 28, 2019
662 Posts
Offline

Anyone else thinking it was no accident the granddaughter circled numbers for the wrong game? Maybe planned to fish it out of the trash later?

... Sooper dooper top seekrit winning numbers: 5 16 17 24 33 52 ...

    Raven62's avatar - binary
    25
    New Jersey
    United States
    Member #17842
    June 28, 2005
    137852 Posts
    Online

    Congrats to the Winner and his Family!

    Treat each Lottery Ticket as if it's a Winner until you're Double Sure it's Not!

    A mind once stretched by a new idea never returns to its original dimensions!

    Catch-22: A dilemma or difficult circumstance from which there is no escape because of mutually conflicting or dependent conditions.

    Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges: When the republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous.

      hearsetrax's avatar - alien on_computer.jpg

      United States
      Member #52343
      May 21, 2007
      3339 Posts
      Offline

      Anyone else thinking it was no accident the granddaughter circled numbers for the wrong game? Maybe planned to fish it out of the trash later?

      👴even money 

        TheGameGrl's avatar - Lottery-012.jpg
        A long and winding road
        United States
        Member #17083
        June 10, 2005
        6528 Posts
        Offline

        It's become the in thing to say...I almost lost the ticket, tossed the ticket ...or left it in the car. Really it should say..my life is boring so I'll sensationalized it by making up this tale of drama. 

         

        He claimed and so it goes. I'm not going to be THAT person. I'll show up ,tell the media my name and let them create the drama while I go off to live a decent life.

        Count your smiles.

          Avatar
          Chasing $ Millions.
          White Shores- California
          United States
          Member #136473
          December 12, 2012
          6495 Posts
          Offline

          If William is 94, l put he's granddaughter's age in the 50's range. How on earth does William catch her mistake? Probably knew he had to recheck her calculations because she screwed up in the past. Good catch William, you show them how it's done big fella.

          Sometimes you just have to DIY.

          Banana

           * Voice of Reason *   

           

          People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

            sweetie7398's avatar - flower2
            100

            United States
            Member #22701
            September 30, 2005
            13618 Posts
            Offline

            Congrats💸

            Life, love, family Love

              music*'s avatar - DiscoBallGlowing
              USN United States Navy
              Fresno, California
              United States
              Member #157851
              August 2, 2014
              3959 Posts
              Offline

              Congratulations to William Bowker, 94.   $2.2 million will definitely help himself as well as his family. 

               I guess he did not want the annuity. LOL

               Thank You for your service Air Force veteran William Bowker!

               "We are all in this together!" 

                LottoBux's avatar - ryn8iCO
                25
                Ontario
                Canada
                Member #109239
                April 9, 2011
                60488 Posts
                Offline

                Anyone else thinking it was no accident the granddaughter circled numbers for the wrong game? Maybe planned to fish it out of the trash later?

                Anything's Possible.

                Maybe At His Age,She Figured He Would Take Her Word For It.

                Good On Him Though, For Following Through.

                                 

                  plumsage's avatar - rinard
                  north carolina
                  United States
                  Member #132455
                  September 4, 2012
                  319 Posts
                  Online

                  God bless Mr. William and his family.  I like a winner!!!

                  Happy healthy wealthy and wise.

                    HappyDreamer's avatar - lib
                    New Member
                    Perth Amboy, NJ
                    United States
                    Member #194003
                    November 25, 2018
                    4 Posts
                    Offline

                    Congratulations for your winning and thank you for your service.

                    What a blessing for you and your family! You proved that good things happen when you have faith in you and always paid off to check twice. 

                    Enjoy!!!

                    Prosperity is a way of living and thinking, and not just having money or things. G.

                      Cassie8620's avatar - oGH0ok
                      1935.0806.1594.4774.6384
                      California
                      United States
                      Member #180566
                      March 13, 2017
                      4495 Posts
                      Offline

                      Anything's Possible.

                      Maybe At His Age,She Figured He Would Take Her Word For It.

                      Good On Him Though, For Following Through.

                      oh i know a few who were thinking this when hearing the story, that i also shared from here, ya know."

                      I love seeing a good person who deserve it win, and i am very happy for this AIR FORCE VETERAN. How nice to see this!

                      -

                      But, yea, you're right, Lotto Bux ya never know.

                       

                      I am hoping i am blessed to live long as he has, this is so nice, as i personally don't drink.  NEVER smoke nothing at all. Smiley Eat right, with a few several snacks at times lol

                      but wow early 90s, god bless him! I am sure he will quite generously share with her entire family,those he love or who love her and  make plans for if he pass soon being in his nineties but i hope he live much longer to enjoy some of Smileythis beautiful jackpot."

                       

                      Just like a neighbor of mine whose  mom just turned the ripe old age of 93 and her father is going to be 99 in a week!

                      Both are so happy IN love, and doing well health-wise, truly amazin'. BananaGod bless him, congratulations.

                        Avatar
                        Kentucky
                        United States
                        Member #32651
                        February 14, 2006
                        9077 Posts
                        Offline

                        Regardless of what "almost happened" it still was a happy ending.

                          dpoly1's avatar - driver
                          PA
                          United States
                          Member #66139
                          October 16, 2008
                          1998 Posts
                          Offline

                          Congrats and thank you for your Service!

                          US Flag

                          dpoly1 - Playing the lottery to save the jobs of those that build, transport, sell & maintain luxury items! -

                           

                          Eschew Poverty ........... Vote Conservative!

                            JAMORA's avatar - ladyclover
                            NC
                            United States
                            Member #164393
                            February 28, 2015
                            3729 Posts
                            Offline

                            If William is 94, l put he's granddaughter's age in the 50's range. How on earth does William catch her mistake? Probably knew he had to recheck her calculations because she screwed up in the past. Good catch William, you show them how it's done big fella.

                            Sometimes you just have to DIY.

                            Banana

                            Well, it does say she's a tax attorney....ThudI'd hate to have her do my taxes, and have to check behind her!

                            "Don't waste time, it's the stuff life's made of..."