Hoosier Lottery: Highland Powerball $1M winner revealed

November 29, 2012 2:15:26 PM PST
A 34-year-old union electrician is $1 million richer thanks to a Powerball ticket that matched five of the six winning numbers.

Larry Chandler drove from northwest Indiana to Indianapolis Thursday morning to claim his prize.

Chandler bought his tickets at a Citgo gas station in Highland, Indiana.

"This type of stuff don't happen to people like me," Chandler said.

ABC7 spoke with Chandler Thursday afternoon after he returned home from Indianapolis, where Thursday morning he collected his check.

"I just deposited that bad boy. Instantly. Get that out of my hands, you know," said Chandler.

Chandler says he didn't even watch Wednesday night's drawing.

It wasn't until Thursday morning that Chandler saw in the newspaper that he matched all but the Powerball number.

"I looked at the paper, looked at the number, looked at the paper, looked at the number. About 300 times it seemed like," Chandler said.

"He said, 'I won a million dollars! I won a million dollars! I won a million dollars!' And he just kept repeating it," said girlfriend Donna Eder. "She says, 'You didn't play the power play. You didn't win nothing.' I said, 'It's five numbers. I've got to win something,' " Chandler said.

Many customers at the Highland Citgo were trying to repeat Chandler's luck Thursday.

"They've already come in the door and congratulations and bought more tickets," said gas station clerk Stella Beaver.

"It's always nice to see one of your local friends or neighbors has done something good or won something," said customer Steve Michalec.

Chandler's winnings, after taxes, come to about $713,000. He says he plans to help his mother in Pittsburgh and set up a college fund for his 12-year-old daughter.

But first, Chandler and his girlfriend plan to dine at Red Lobster, where Thursday the signature entree looked a little nervous.

"We have a 3-pound lobster in there with his name on it if he chooses it," said Red Lobster manager Bill Walz.

"I called my boss, told him I wouldn't be in today or tomorrow," said Chandler. "But I'm going back to work Monday."


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