19 Aug 2014
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No Foolin' 'Round Here: Bay Area Man Claims Largest CA Lottery Prize Ever

The $425.3 million prize-- from a ticket bought at a store in Milpitas-- was the largest-ever jackpot won in California and sixth largest in U.S. history, according to the state lottery.

No Foolin' 'Round Here: Bay Area Man Claims Largest CA Lottery Prize Ever
By Bay City News Service:

A man who won a $425.3 million Powerball jackpot from a single-play ticket decided to claim his prize in Sacramento Tuesday, April Fool's Day, nearly six weeks later, California Lottery officials said. 

B. Raymond "Ray" Buxton came forward to claim the prize at state lottery headquarters while wearing a t-shirt with a picture of "Star Wars" film character Yoda and the message "Luck of the Jedi I Have," the lottery office reported. 

Buxton, who choose to accept a lump sum of $242.2 million of the $425.3 million he won, said he first plans to do some traveling and then create an organization to help people in need. 

"I'm going to enjoy my new job setting up a charitable foundation focused on areas of pediatric health, child hunger and education," Buxton said in a statement released by the state lottery. 

Buxton, a retiree from an undisclosed residence in Northern California, said that on Feb. 17 he was getting lunch at a Subway franchise located inside the Dixon Landing Chevron store at 1551 California Circle in Milpitas. 

He had earlier bought a Powerball ticket after noticing the growing jackpot but while in the store, he opted to play again and purchased a single Quick Pick ticket for $2. 

That ticket ultimately hit when the numbers 17, 49, 54, 35, 1 and the Powerball number 34 were drawn on Feb. 19. 

"`Unbelievable' is all I could muster," Buxton said he remembers saying upon learning he had won. 

"I sat in front of the computer for hours in disbelief, frequently checking and rechecking the numbers across multiple sources," he said. "Once the initial shock passed, I couldn't sleep for days." 

Buxton said he was so concerned about his winning ticket that he did not tell anyone the news at first. 

After validating the numbers on the state lottery's website, he read the Winner's Handbook on the website, "put a plan in motion" and did some research. 

"It took over a week to solidify legal and financial representation," he said. 

With an advisory team in place, he then decided to take the cash option of $242.2 million, which is before taxes, lottery officials said. 

Buxton's $425.3 million win was the largest-ever jackpot won in California and sixth largest in U.S. history, according to the state lottery.


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