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US Powerball Lotto

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by Mihaela Schwartz (subscribe)
I am a freelance writer and an avid traveler.
Published May 17th 2013
Dream, Hope and Win
Powerball lottery jackpot is currently $600 million and capturing the interest of people all over the world who are flocking to supermarkets and websites such as theLotter to purchase tickets in the hope of winning big.

This is not the first time the Powerball has reached such an exciting jackpot. A few months ago, the picture of a man of Hispanic origins proudly showing the $338 million check gained a top spot within international media. Winner of the 4th largest jackpot in Powerball's history, Pedro Quezada, told the world a story taught us all a valuable lesson: perseverance, hard work and faith are the sure ingredients to succeed.

By most standards, the 44 year old New Jersey resident has already been living the American dream. But, it was certainly not the one he had hoped for 26 years ago, when he left the Dominican Republic. Mr. Quezada's road to success was paved with good intentions, but also with misfortunes. Four years ago a fire destroyed a great part of the convenience store Apple Deli & Grocery that he has been running together with his eldest son Casiano. The same year of 2009 brought another bump into Pedro Quezada's way as one of his real estate properties went through a foreclosure.

Anyway, all these troubles are long forgotten now that Mr. Quezada's life took a sudden turn. Little did he know what future held for him on March 25th, when, on his way to work, he entered Eagles Liquors to check his lottery ticket. The man coming out of the store a few minutes later was the winner of the 4th largest lotto jackpot in Powerball's 20 year long history. Pedro Quezada's lifetime belief that God will help those who help themselves eventually came true. The lucky Dominican is convinced that God himself sent him the numbers 17, 29, 31, 52, 53, and the Powerball number 31 that made him the big jackpot winner.

A few days later, Mr. Quezada cashed in a $221 million lump sum ($152 after tax deduction). What will he do with all this money? Father of 5 and grandfather of 1, Pedro Quezada spoke about taking care of his family, buying himself a car, and offering his wife Ines Sanchez everything she wishes. He also hinted at helping his neighbors, without providing further details.

For now, one thing is sure: he won't be spending 18 hours a day in the Eighth Street bodega anymore. Actually, the property went up for sale the day after the lucky lottery winner was handed the check. The same evening, the couple packed a few clothes and left the small town of Passaic for an unknown destination. According to Mr. Quezada's statement, he wants to stay away from the public eye for a while, to think about his future, and to share with his loved ones the tremendous joy the lucky Powerball numbers brought into his life.

The lottery universe is dotted with such touching stories, and new ones are added all the time, especially when a huge lotto game like Powerball continues to roll over for weeks.

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