A “26 for $25” Megabucks ticket turned out to be a good investment for a Springfield, Oregon man, lottery officials said.
But it almost didn’t happen.
Wilbur Brown purchased the ticket, covering 26 consecutive lottery draws over 13 weeks, at a Moose Lodge in Springfield on Christmas Eve, a lottery news release said.
He had never bought one before a friend bought one, but decided to give it a try, Brown said. At first, he was conscientious about checking the winning numbers.
“After the first few drawings, I was checking my ticket,” Brown said. “Then I just sort of forgot about it and didn’t check.”
On a return visit to Moose Lodge in February, Brown remembered the drawings and pulled out his ticket to check the winning numbers.
A self-checking machine told him to “see customer service”. That’s when he learned he had won $8.9 million on January 29, lottery officials said.
Brown elected to take his earnings as a 30-year annuity, entitling him to about $200,000 a year after taxes. He set up a trust fund for the money.
The Moose Lodge will receive $89,000 for the sale of the winning ticket, which the manager says will be a welcome benefit after some tough years in recent years.