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Air Force veteran from Hutchinson wins $1 million in Powerball

  • Eagle staff
  • Published Tuesday, July 3, 2012, at 5:02 p.m.
  • Updated Friday, Nov. 30, 2012, at 12:56 p.m.

The state’s newest millionaire might almost be its most careful.

Air Force veteran Matthew Packebush of Hutchinson has claimed a Powerball prize worth $1 million after his Quick Pick ticket matched the first five numbers in the June 30 drawing, Kansas Lottery officials said Tuesday in a news release. The winning numbers were 07-15-20-41-44. Only Packebush’s Powerball number of 10 failed to match the winning number 22, which would have won the 34-year-old dad millions more.

Packebush went to great lengths to protect his ticket, which he bought at a Kwik Shop in Hutchinson.

“Shortly after the drawing, I looked up the winning numbers on my phone,” Packebush said. “When I realized I had matched all five numbers on my ticket, I called my mom. She doesn’t like getting calls late at night, but I had to tell her the news. When she answered the phone, she thought something was wrong. When I told her I thought I had won the lottery, she couldn’t believe it.”

Packebush then went to a convenience store to verify his ticket.

“When I scanned my ticket, the machine said the Powerball results weren’t in yet, so I went home and looked up the winning numbers again,” he said in the release. “At that point, I was pretty sure I had matched all five numbers. I decided I had better sign the back of my ticket, but couldn’t find a pen anywhere. I drove back to the store where I bought the ticket and asked for a pen.”

After signing, Packebush said he never let it out of his sight and had trouble sleeping. He said he even placed his winning ticket in a Ziploc bag and taped it to his chest.

“I didn’t want to take a chance of losing it,” he said. “That’s a lot of money.”

The father of three said he plans to buy a truck, start college funds for his children and invest in real estate.

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