California winner of $1.765 billion Powerball jackpot is lauded as kind family man by neighbors

Mar 19, 2024, 9:46 am (41 comments)

Powerball

"Couldn't have happened to a better guy"

By Kate Northrop

Following the California Lottery's announcement of Theodorus Struyck as one of the lottery winners of the $1.765 billion Powerball jackpot on Friday, neighbors have come out and said that the win "couldn't have happened to a better guy."

The California Lottery named Theodorus Struyck, 65, as the representative of a group that won $1.765 billion in the Oct. 11, 2023 Powerball drawing, cementing them in history as winners of the world's second-largest lottery jackpot.

While the other members of the group have not been named, Struyck stepped forward on behalf of his group since the California Lottery does not allow winners to claim prizes anonymously. As it turns out, neighbors of Struyck have nothing but nice things to say about him.

Struyck, who also goes by Theo, has been lauded as a kind "family man" who has been retired from his last job at UPS.

Kevin Woten, a neighbor who has lived in Frazier Park for over 20 years, told the Daily Mail that he has not seen Struyck for days.

"When I hear Theo won, I thought, 'Couldn't have happened to a better guy," he relayed to the news outlet. "He's a family man, loves to spend time with his grandkids. He adores the kids. He's a really kind person and always seems happy. I imagine he's got a lot of ideas of what he wants to do with the money."

Like Woten, Struyck has been a long-time resident in Frazier Park, a small town of 3,000 people, for well over a decade with his wife, Laura. He is originally from Hawaii, and although he is not presumed to have any relatives directly affected by the devastating fires in Maui, Woten noted he seemed "distraught" over the devastation in their last long conversation together.

Another neighbor, Mary Dreier, remarked that she hadn't seen him around for a few days.

"He's a really nice person and is enjoying retirement," Dreier told the Daily Mail. "I knew the winner had claimed the ticket in San Diego, which was very smart. Kudos to him!"

Acquaintances of Struyck say that he has a son in the US Marines who is based out of San Diego, which is where the winning ticket was cashed. He is also known to be a fishing enthusiast, with a small boat parked outside his garage.

Another nameless neighbor noted that the recent media attention has driven Struyck away from home in the quiet mountainside town. The last time the unidentified neighbor saw him was about five days ago when he had put up a no trespassing sign on his property.

The owner of Midway Market & Liquor in Frazier Park, the retailer that sold the $1.765 billion winning ticket, said that Struyck is a regular customer and visits the store at least two to three times a week. He last visited the retailer on Thursday, but owner Nidal 'Andy' Khalil did not have a chance to congratulate him in person yet.

"I was sure someone local had bought the ticket, and I'm so glad it was," Khalil said to DailyMail.com.

Khalil was originally worried that the ticket was lost when no one had come forward for five months.

"I'm very happy that someone finally claimed the winnings because I thought the ticket might've been lost or the winner washed it in their laundry," he added. "I don't get too many customers from out of town, so I thought it would be someone local."

Although the entire nation had its eyes on Midway Market & Liquor thanks to the media storm generated by the sale of the winning ticket, Khalil said things around the tiny town have mostly gone "back to normal."

Midway Market & Liquor, a family-owned business of over 30 years, took home a $1 million check from the Lottery as a bonus for selling the winning ticket.

The Powerball jackpot currently stands at $687 million for the next drawing on Wed., Mar. 20 at 10:59 pm Eastern Time.

Powerball tickets are sold in 45 states, Washington D.C., U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico. Drawings take place at 10:59 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday.

The winning numbers, official drawing videos, jackpot analysis showing after-tax jackpot amounts, complete prize payout charts, and more can be found at USA Mega (www.usamega.com), a popular website offering in-depth information about the USA's two biggest multi-state lottery games, Powerball and Mega Millions.

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Lottery Post Staff

Comments

Bleudog101

One of the best feel good stories in a long time on LP!

Now his face is like Cruz's...plastered all over the place.   The price for fame and fortune in non-anonymous state.

Naturally want to just know how many others he was in the group with, names no necessary.   And like to know if it was a QP.

 

Good luck everyone tonight on Mega Millions.

thaencyder

Poor guy's face is going to be all over the Internet. California needs to get with the times and allow winners to claim prizes anonymously (or via a verifiable trust) if the choose to do so. This is ridiculous.  For a state that claims to care about privacy as well as safety, it's quite ironic California hasn't been able to adopt to the times yet.

PrisonerSix

Sounds like it couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.

I wish him all the best.

sully16's avatarsully16

Congrats to the lucky guy, enjoy. 🥳

noise-gate

* Taking nothing away from this better guy, but there's a ton of " better guys & gals on LP" that deserve to win either MM or PB. Let's not short change the good people on LP who have been playing for decades- just saying.👍

Artist77's avatarArtist77

Glad to see a nice person win. I think it is sheer arrogance to assume there are "better" people on lp who should have won. Everyone is equally entitled. Length of time playing is not relevant nor does it make anyone more deserving.

Bitterness does get in the way for some people playing the lottery.

noise-gate

* Hello, the post says a friend mentions " couldn't have happened to a BETTER guy." Just stop your criticism over everything. Grow up.

JustMaybe

Quote: Originally posted by noise-gate on Mar 19, 2024

* Taking nothing away from this better guy, but there's a ton of " better guys & gals on LP" that deserve to win either MM or PB. Let's not short change the good people on LP who have been playing for decades- just saying.👍

I think someone could have won a big jackpot on LP and just decided to be anonymous.

Or they could have used their real name and you wouldn't know that "noise gate" is actually Theo.

And they would continue being on LP like nothing happened, lol.

Artist77's avatarArtist77

Quote: Originally posted by noise-gate on Mar 19, 2024

* Hello, the post says a friend mentions " couldn't have happened to a BETTER guy." Just stop your criticism over everything. Grow up.

🤣🗣

Someone does not understand what that phrase means. And coming from the trolling king of criticism.

JustMaybe

Quote: Originally posted by noise-gate on Mar 19, 2024

* Taking nothing away from this better guy, but there's a ton of " better guys & gals on LP" that deserve to win either MM or PB. Let's not short change the good people on LP who have been playing for decades- just saying.👍

I have my one ticket for tonight's MM draw, if I win big, I will let everyone know.

Otherwise we forge ahead, one ticket at a time.

Fingers crossed.

noise-gate

Quote: Originally posted by JustMaybe on Mar 19, 2024

I have my one ticket for tonight's MM draw, if I win big, I will let everyone know.

Otherwise we forge ahead, one ticket at a time.

Fingers crossed.

*  We forge ahead, yeah. Unfortunately for California, it's coughing up your name, taking your pic of you like and where you purchased your ticket. There is always the gorilla suit standing by.

noise-gate

Quote: Originally posted by Artist77 on Mar 19, 2024

🤣🗣

Someone does not understand what that phrase means. And coming from the trolling king of criticism.

* After all these years you still the same, always criticizing posts you don't like because it bothers you. Undergo therapy.

Artist77's avatarArtist77

The grammar is atrocious.

👳👳‍♀️

Artist77's avatarArtist77

Quote: Originally posted by JustMaybe on Mar 19, 2024

I think someone could have won a big jackpot on LP and just decided to be anonymous.

Or they could have used their real name and you wouldn't know that "noise gate" is actually Theo.

And they would continue being on LP like nothing happened, lol.

I agree. It is kind of naive to assume there are not at least a couple of $1 million plus winners on this site. I am thrilled for them and glad they kept it quiet.

Brock Lee's avatarBrock Lee

Quote: Originally posted by noise-gate on Mar 19, 2024

* Hello, the post says a friend mentions " couldn't have happened to a BETTER guy." Just stop your criticism over everything. Grow up.

chill brah. "couldn't have happened to a better guy" is a colloquialism in english. you're not supposed to take it literally. you're also not supposed to take a bunch of uppers before posting online.

LooneyGambler

 This is why you should relocate immediate after winning.

 They announced publicly he lived 500 yards from the neighborhood store. His privacy is now gone.

 A group representative, means he must have bought the winning ticket for a player pool. Lucky group of people.

Bleudog101

For the heck of it just scanned tonight's MM ticket @ Pilot.  Folks should know it fixes the mechanical balls so they come in.

 

On the lighter side just pulled up GA pick 4....1999 and paid over $4 million.

Then onto KY and stared @ the pick 4.   Darned if my cell phone # 0982 didn't come in exact order.   Would never play it and $5K out the window!!

sully16's avatarsully16

Quote: Originally posted by Artist77 on Mar 19, 2024

The grammar is atrocious.

👳👳‍♀️

Welp, Some  people have a fear of (You're )  I think it's called himaflopaphobia.

Artist77's avatarArtist77

Quote: Originally posted by sully16 on Mar 19, 2024

Welp, Some  people have a fear of (You're )  I think it's called himaflopaphobia.

🤣  And one can even get free EASL lessons on lp. LP improves and educates lives in more than one way.

Lotterologist's avatarLotterologist

Quote: Originally posted by PrisonerSix on Mar 19, 2024

Sounds like it couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.

I wish him all the best.

When I win that's what people are gonna say about me!

In the meantime, congratulations to Mr. Struyck!

Looks like a cool guy.

Artist77's avatarArtist77

Quote: Originally posted by Bleudog101 on Mar 19, 2024

One of the best feel good stories in a long time on LP!

Now his face is like Cruz's...plastered all over the place.   The price for fame and fortune in non-anonymous state.

Naturally want to just know how many others he was in the group with, names no necessary.   And like to know if it was a QP.

 

Good luck everyone tonight on Mega Millions.

I wonder if the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) could have an effect on state/US lottery privacy laws in the future. Several US states are following it now. It really protects personal data 100x better than current US laws. A bit of extrapolation  to protect the identity of lottery winners is not far fetched.

ShagE3

Good luck everybody ...     893 million .....

PrisonerSix

Quote: Originally posted by JustMaybe on Mar 19, 2024

I have my one ticket for tonight's MM draw, if I win big, I will let everyone know.

Otherwise we forge ahead, one ticket at a time.

Fingers crossed.

I have 4 for tonight, one for every $100million of cash.

Not sure what I'll do if I win big.

PrisonerSix

Quote: Originally posted by ShagE3 on Mar 19, 2024

Good luck everybody ...     893 million .....

I didn't realize it had been raised again. Must be an increase in sales.

I'd like to win but if it rolls a few more times, I'll hit $1billion!

PrisonerSix

Quote: Originally posted by PrisonerSix on Mar 19, 2024

I have 4 for tonight, one for every $100million of cash.

Not sure what I'll do if I win big.

Don't have to worry because I didn't win again. I only matched 1 number on 4 lines and no MegaBall. Back to the store tomorrow for more tickets!

ShagE3

That's smart thinking .... Coming up with a formula to regulate how many tickets you purchase!

Delaware lottery projects the next mm jackpot will reach 977 if no one wins tonight.

Stack47

Quote: Originally posted by ShagE3 on Mar 19, 2024

Good luck everybody ...     893 million .....

Weird that the article says "Struyck is the representative of a group that won $1.765 billion" and "the other members of the group have not been named" but it sure looks like this discussion is assuming Struyck is the sole ticket owner.

Can't recall in the past where the neighbors' of another spokesman of a group of jackpot winners were interviewed

Bleudog101

Took MUSL a long time (as I tossed and turned) to announce that Mega Millions jackpot will be $977 million Friday.   Speaking for many LP members, if not all, that we know it'll jump up over $1 Billion for Friday.

winterhug

Is it possible in California to come forward to claim a lottery win through a lawyer, LLC or wearing a mask?

DDBagger519

Quote: Originally posted by winterhug on Mar 20, 2024

Is it possible in California to come forward to claim a lottery win through a lawyer, LLC or wearing a mask?

He could've gone the route of forming an LLC, but I'm sure there are details that we're not privy to here.  There were multiple winners, so if even one of them had loose lips they probably figured it wouldn't be worth it to form an LLC to claim the prize.  It also makes you vulnerable to be part of a multi-member LLC because then your personal information is available to each member and whomever they end up sharing that information with.  And, a lot of people probably don't think of this, but the winner could have worn a mask.  But, it also sounds like he was well known in his neighborhood so it may have been a fruitless effort to go that far.  It does seem that he did the smart thing though and he's laying low for the time being.

PrisonerSix

Quote: Originally posted by Bleudog101 on Mar 20, 2024

Took MUSL a long time (as I tossed and turned) to announce that Mega Millions jackpot will be $977 million Friday.   Speaking for many LP members, if not all, that we know it'll jump up over $1 Billion for Friday.

That would be cool.

CDanaT's avatarCDanaT

Congrats T.S. 

Sorry to see,"that the recent media attention has driven Struyck away from home in the quiet mountainside town. The last time the unidentified neighbor saw him was about five days ago when he had put up a no trespassing sign on his property."

I do hope you and your group enjoy this financial windfall forever.

ShagE3

Maybe this struyck fellow is a good guy in that he "took one" for the sake of the other's involved?

Perhaps he had the least to lose by becoming famous ...... or maybe he needed the $$$ sooner than the others did so he came forward?

CDanaT's avatarCDanaT

I hear ya ShagE3....While I have no clue on the CA lotto rules for claiming. Having an Atty be the main face and spokesperson on our behalf would be a must if it was authorized.

ShagE3

Yeah, but can you trust an attorney with anything?

Certainly not a family member or friend of the family ......

I wouldn't show my attorney the actual winning ticket until the day I collect my $$$.

As much as I'd hate to pay their fee I'd go with a well known big-time law firm ..... It would be more likely they wouldn't try and pull one over on you....  They have too much to lose.

HumanBlade666

I would definitely put a winning in this big amount via a trust or llc and have a team put together lawyer cpa financial advisor and real estate agent mentor and stay anonymous for as long as possible. Wouldn't tell any family or close friends and keep living life to the simplest terms. Nothing flashy or fancy for me just a nice little travel trailer camper to attach to my truck and travel the USA 🇺🇸 with my dogs and my dad.

Brock Lee's avatarBrock Lee

Quote: Originally posted by on Apr 15, 2024

he'd be rolling in his grave if he saw how much a tesla car costs.

Lotterologist's avatarLotterologist

Quote: Originally posted by Brock Lee on Mar 20, 2024

he'd be rolling in his grave if he saw how much a tesla car costs.

My point was that some things, like electricity, should be free for everyone.

Lotterologist's avatarLotterologist

If Tesla, the man who gave us AC (alternating current) which BILLIONS of people use today, thought it should be free for everyone, who am I to disagree with him?

He was a lot smarter than me!

winterhug

Quote: Originally posted by DDBagger519 on Mar 20, 2024

He could've gone the route of forming an LLC, but I'm sure there are details that we're not privy to here.  There were multiple winners, so if even one of them had loose lips they probably figured it wouldn't be worth it to form an LLC to claim the prize.  It also makes you vulnerable to be part of a multi-member LLC because then your personal information is available to each member and whomever they end up sharing that information with.  And, a lot of people probably don't think of this, but the winner could have worn a mask.  But, it also sounds like he was well known in his neighborhood so it may have been a fruitless effort to go that far.  It does seem that he did the smart thing though and he's laying low for the time being.

I agree but if it were me I would have worn a mask or something. Even if it was a group of us winners, the average public would not know what I look like. I would also most likely move from my area. We shall wait to hear if this guy and his group goes on a spending spree, like the Castro guy with his multiple mansions.

Bleudog101

Quote: Originally posted by winterhug on Mar 21, 2024

I agree but if it were me I would have worn a mask or something. Even if it was a group of us winners, the average public would not know what I look like. I would also most likely move from my area. We shall wait to hear if this guy and his group goes on a spending spree, like the Castro guy with his multiple mansions.

Yes, even sunglasses would help a bit to disguise him.   I like the ones in other states that hold up the fake ceremonial check covering their face.

Still irks me that the lottery won't say if it is QP or not (BFD) and how many are in the group.

End of comments
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