Lottery wins of 2022: A look back at people 'hitting the jackpot'

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While it’s unclear if 2023 will be your year, some people won big in 2022.

From multimillion-dollar and multibillion-dollar jackpot drawings to five- and six-figure scratch-off tickets, here are 10 lottery stories that captured national and international attention in the last 12 months.

Left: A display panel advertises the $1.9 billion Powerball jackpot at a Pennsylvania convenience store Nov. 7, 2022. Right: Lottery player Gordon Midvale fills out his Mega Millions ticket at a California 7-Eleven store July 26, 2022. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic and AP Photo/Godofredo A. Vásquez / AP Newsroom)

1. California store owner earns $1M for selling $2B Powerball ticket

Joe Chahayed, owner of Joe’s Service Center, the Mobil gas station at Woodbury Road and Fair Oaks Avenue in Altadena, is the man who sold the $2.04 billion-winning Powerball ticket. He is seen meeting the media Nov. 8, 2022. (Dean Musgrove/Los Angeles Daily News via Getty Images / Getty Images)

Joe Chahayed, the owner of Joe's Service Center in Altadena, California, earned a $1 million maximum bonus in November for selling a winning $2.04 billion-dollar Powerball ticket, according to FOX 11 Los Angeles.

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The winner of the record-breaking multi-state lottery jackpot is unknown. Powerball winners have 90 days to one year to claim their prize depending on the ticket’s selling jurisdiction, according to the lottery board’s website.

The Powerball is played in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. 

2. Man in China wins $30M in secret

A man from the People’s Republic of China claimed his prize from the Guangxi Welfare Lottery Oct. 24, 2022, while wearing a yellow mascot costume modeled after the lottery center’s mascot. (Guangxi Welfare Lottery Center / Fox News)

A man in the People’s Republic of China reportedly won $30 million from the Guangxi Welfare Lottery, a regional lottery that raises money for public welfare, including care centers for the elderly, disabled, orphaned and financially disadvantaged.

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The man anonymously claimed his prize Oct. 24 under the alias "Mr. Li," and he did so while wearing a yellow mascot costume that represents the Guangxi Welfare Lottery. Mr Li told the lottery board he planned to hide his winnings from his wife, children, extended family and friends until he figured out what to do with the money.

3. Woman in Iowa wins $100,000 for a second time

Mary Starks of Davenport, Iowa, won $100,000 in the lottery twice in about two years. Her recent win was while playing the “Hit it Big!” scratch game. (Iowa Lottery / Fox News)

Mary Starks of Davenport, Iowa, won $100,000 from a "Hit it Big!" scratch-off game issued by the Iowa Lottery Authority, a state-run lottery board that donates proceeds to veterans, military and public safety families, local tourism and schools.

Starks previously won $100,000 from a different scratch game in March 2020. She claimed her more recent prize Sept. 13. The two-time lottery winner told the Iowa Lottery she plans to use her winnings to pay off debt and start a new business.

4. Woman in Kentucky wins $175,000 at holiday party

Lori Janes of Kentucky won $175,000 from a scratch-off lottery ticket she got at a company holiday party. (Kentucky Lottery / Fox News)

Lori Janes, an office manager at a dental office in Louisville, Kentucky, won $175,000 from a Hit The Jackpot scratch-off game issued by the Kentucky Lottery Corporation, a state-run lottery board that donates proceeds to fund college scholarships, grants and programs.

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Janes got her winning ticket at a white elephant gift exchange hosted by her company’s recent holiday party. She claimed her prize in December and took home $124,250 after taxes, according to the Kentucky Lottery’s Dec. 13 press release. 

Janes told the Kentucky Lottery she plans to use her winnings to pay off family vehicles and her daughter’s student loans.

5. Teen in North Carolina wins $1M on his way to second job

Dalton Radford, 18, a public works employee who has two jobs, reportedly won $1 million from a North Carolina Education Lottery scratch-off. (North Carolina Education Lottery / Fox News)

Dalton Radford, 18, of Dallas, North Carolina, won $1 million from a Carolina Jackpot scratch-off game issued by the North Carolina Education Lottery, a state-run lottery that raises money for schools, students and education programs.

Radford, a public works employee, told the lottery board he was on his way to his second job when he won his Instant Ticket prize. He claimed his prize Dec. 6 and took the lump sum, which left him with $426,063 after state and federal tax withholdings. The teen told the NC Education Lottery he plans to buy a new vehicle and save the rest of his winnings. 

6. 433 Filipinos win and share $4M jackpot

The Grand Lotto, a regional lottery board in the Republic of the Philippines, confirmed at least 433 people won a $4 million jackpot in October. 

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The lottery board, which is based in Intramuros, Manila, Philippines, and is operated by the government-run Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office, issued a statement that many of the drawn numbers had a multiple of 9.

Winners of the lottery reportedly claimed their prizes Oct. 1, and each winner took home nearly $10,000 after the money was divided by lottery officials.

7. Unknown lottery player in Florida wins $494M Mega Millions before hurricane

This aerial photo shows damaged homes and debris in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian Sept. 29, 2022, in Fort Myers, Fla. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee / AP Newsroom)

A lottery player in Florida reportedly purchased a winning Mega Millions ticket valued at $494 million in August, but the winner has yet to come forward, according to The Associated Press.

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The ticket was reportedly purchased in Fort Myers from a 7-Eleven, according to officials from the Florida Lottery, a state-run lottery that donates proceeds to public education funds in the Sunshine State.

The winner remained unidentified even after Hurricane Ian made landfall in southwest Florida Sept. 28, The Associated Press reported. Florida Lottery Draw players have 180 days to claim their prize while scratch-off or Fast Play players have 270 days to claim their prize, according to the lottery board’s website.

8. Man in South Carolina wins $100,000 after watching TLC show

A man in South Carolina won big when he used a strategy from the TLC series “Lottery Changed My Life.” The unidentified man won $100,000 on a Powerball ticket. (iStock / iStock)

A man won $100,000 from a Powerball ticket sold by a Kwik Fill gas station in Hanahan, South Carolina, according to a press release issued by the South Carolina Education Lottery, which is a state-run lottery board that benefits scholarship and grant funds in The Palmetto State.

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The man claimed his prize anonymously in June and used part of his winnings to purchase a new car, according to the SC Education Lottery. 

The man told lottery officials he committed himself to three months of weekly lottery playing, which he budgeted to $25 per week. He reportedly started playing the lottery after watching an episode of TLC’s documentary series, "Lottery Changed My Life."

9. Man in Virginia wins $1M after thinking he won $600

Jose Flores Velasquez of Annandale, Virginia, thought he had won just $600, but when he went to redeem his prize, he found out he won the $1 million prize. (Virginia Lottery / Fox News)

Jose Flores Velasquez of Annandale, Virginia, won $1 million in August from playing the 20X the Money scratcher game issued by the Virginia Lottery, but he only learned about his seven-figure prize a month later, the lottery board reported in a press release Sept. 6.

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Flores Velasquez bought his winning ticket from a Safeway supermarket while he purchased packs of soda. He reportedly thought he won $600 and was surprised to learn he was one of the game's top winners.

Flores Velasquez chose the one-time cash option, which totaled $759,878 before taxes, according to the Virginia Lottery, which donates proceeds to K-12 public education in the state.

10. Two Mega Millions players in Illinois win and split $1.3B 

Illinois Department of the Lottery Director Harold Mays (right) and Illinois Lottery Claims Supervisor Denise Hernandez (left) hold the giant Mega Millions check that amounted to $1.3 billion July 29, 2022. (Illinois Lottery / Fox News)

Two lottery players in Illinois won the $1.337 billion Mega Millions jackpot in July, according to the Illinois State Lottery, which donates proceeds to fund public education, capital projects and special causes.

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The anonymous pair reportedly played a single ticket they purchased in a Chicago suburb on July 29 and split their winnings. The duo opted for the lump sum payment and split the $780.5 million prize, according to a press release issued by the Illinois Lottery.

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