Cowboy Lassoes Huge Powerball Prize

June 6, 2009

(ChattahBox) — A down-on-his-luck cowboy who had his trailer repossessed and couldn’t pay his taxes, lassoed one of the biggest lottery jackpots in history – a $232.1 million Powerball prize.  Neal Wanless, who lives on his family’s 320-acre ranch near Mission, South Dakota, ironically bought the winning ticket in the aptly named nearby town of Winner late last month during a trip to buy livestock feed.

The single 23-year-old lives with his mother and father lives on a 230-acre ranch, raising cattle and sheep but, has been trying to make ends meet selling scrap metal, but was hard hit by the plunging price of iron in the nation’s seventh-poorest county.

When Wanless realized he’d won the ninth-biggest jackpot in Powerball history, he didn’t go on a spending spree.  He prepared hay for baling, did odd jobs on the ranch and confided in his horse, Eleanor, that he’d like to buy a little more land.

“It’d be nice if we go for a longer ride than usual on a bigger ranch of our own,” he told the horse.

Wanless opted to take home the lump sum payment $88.5 million after taxes are deducted.

“My family has been helped by the community, and I intend to repay that help many times over,” he said.
Wanless bought the ticket – picking the numbers of relatives’ birthdays – during a trip to Winner to buy livestock feed.


One Response to “Cowboy Lassoes Huge Powerball Prize”

  1. Cowboy Lottery Winner on June 11th, 2009 12:43 pm

    Seems like a good kid, and bright too. I reckon he will see his family and friends OK. Then go hog wild for a bit. But ultimately he’ll remember where he’s from and will turn out just fine.

    Best wishes to Neal and his family.

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