What’s it like to become an “almost billionaire” overnight?
For the sole winner of the $2.04 billion Powerball drawing in November 2022, life seems a bit more glamorous. Edwin Castro won the largest-ever lottery jackpot, and he opted for a lump sum of $997.6 million, just shy of $1 billion, according to the California Lottery.
Since his historic win, news reports show he has splurged, buying two multimillion-dollar homes in his home state of California, and a vintage ride that’s sure to turn heads. Though he declined to appear publicly when he claimed the grand prize two months after the drawing, he complimented California public schools “as the real winner” and said in a written statement he was shocked and ecstatic. In California, lottery winners’ identities are public record, unless they form a trust. California Lottery director Alva Johnson announced Castro’s win on Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14, 2023, in Sacramento, Calif.
Here are some things to know about Castro and that record-breaking, life-changing lottery win.
Who won $2.04 billion Powerball jackpot?
After months of rollovers, the Nov. 7, 2022, Powerball drawing ballooned to a whopping $2.04 billion. The jackpot was an estimated $1.9 billion days before the drawing, but lottery ticket sales pushed it to more than $2 billion after updated calculations. The drawings had rolled over 40 times since Aug. 3, 2022. Edwin Castro finally won the lottery with these winning numbers: 10-33-41-47-56 and the Powerball was 10.
Did something weird happen with $2.04 billion Powerball lottery drawing?
Because of the intense interest in the $2 billion prize, there was a delay in the drawing for almost 10 hours. Powerball drawings are normally at 11 p.m. EST Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. Nov. 7, 2022, was a Monday, and the drawing didn’t occur until the next morning.
According to Powerball, the delay was due to “a participating lottery needing more time to complete the required security protocols.”
The highly anticipated drawing was delayed because a participating lottery was still processing its sales and play data, the Multi-State Lottery Association said. It’s not clear which lottery was affected. Powerball officials said they have “strict security requirements” that 48 participating lotteries must must meet before a drawing can occur.
As soon as the required procedures were completed by the one outstanding lottery, the drawing proceeded just before 9 a.m. Tuesday.
Who sold winning $2.04 billion Powerball ticket in California?
Even though the $2.04 billion Powerball drawing was delayed, it didn’t take long for the California Lottery system to announce Joe’s Service Center in Altadena, California, near Los Angeles, sold the winning ticket. The identity of the lottery retailer was released a day after the drawing.
In a press conference, owner Joe Chahayed Jr. said he wanted to share the money with his 11 grandchildren. Chahayed and his his son, Joe Chahayed Jr., posed for pictures outside Joe’s Service Center. Retailers typically get a small piece of the grand prize, but because lottery ticket sales pushed the Powerball jackpot well over $2 billion, the bonus prize grew, too. The California Lottery awarded Chahayed a $1 million bonus for selling the winning ticket.
“We want to thank all of our community members that always come that are dedicated to this station,” Chahayed said at the Nov. 9 news conference. “They truly believe in luck and they truly believe that some things are just deserved to be.”
In addition to the grand prize, 22 tickets worth $1 million matched all five numbers except the Powerball in 16 states, Powerball officials said.
What were the winning Powerball numbers for $2.04 billion drawing?
In an odd coincidence, one of the winning numbers matched the Powerball in the $2.04 billion drawing. The Nov. 7, 2022, winning Powerball numbers were 10-33-41-47-56 and the Powerball was 10.
Tick tock, tick tock. If you won Powerball July 19, 2023, drawing, you have until this date to claim $1.08 billion
What did $2.04 billion lottery winner do with his prize money?
After Castro claimed his winnings as a one-time, lump sum payment on Valentine’s Day, three months after the drawing, he bought a $25.5 million estate in Hollywood Hills on March 1. According to USA TODAY, the 13,500-square-foot mansion sits on a 0.58-acre lot and features five bedrooms, seven bathrooms, game room, wine cellar, movie theater, bar, spa and fitness studio. The main room is on the third floor and has its own balcony. Other amenities include a garage big enough to park seven cars.
Most of the house, which sports an outdoor infinity pool and fireplace, is made up of glass walls, photos show.
According to the New York Post, Castro purchased a second home in his hometown of Altadena, a $4 million mansion with views of the San Gabriel Mountains. Features of the 1953 Japanese-style home include a pool, movie theater, five bedrooms and four bathrooms, the New York Post reported. Castro was reportedly living in a one-bedroom home when he won the Powerball.
The New York Post said Castro also bought a vintage white Porsche for $250,000. In addition to his luxury splurges, Castro has a round-the-clock security team.
Who is Edwin Castro, Powerball lottery winner?
In March, TMZ reported Castro was once a Boy Scout, rising to the rank of Eagle Scout, and a prominent athlete at Crescenta Valley High School in La Crescenta, California. The TMX story said Castro played football and baseball for Crescenta Valley and eventually studied architecture at Woodbury University in Burbank, California.
$2.04 billion lottery winner was sued
State lotteries recommend players who believe they have a winning jackpot prize ticket sign the ticket, put it in a safe place, seek financial and legal advice, and contact their state lottery to make an appointment to claim the prize.
Winners also undergo a vetting process by their state lottery. California State Lottery has a “rigorous vetting process” to ensure that the person who says they’ve won is a legitimate winner, said spokesperson Carolyn Becker.
The vetting process can take weeks or months before a winner can be declared, according to Becker.
However, that didn’t stop Edwin Castro from being sued by a man who claimed the winning lottery ticket was actually stolen.
On April 25, Jose Rivera claimed he bought the winning ticket on Nov. 7, hours before the Tuesday morning drawing. California Lottery officials backed Castro and its vetting process.
Who won $1.08 billion Powerball in California on July 19, 2023?
Like Edwin Castro, there’s another billion-dollar Powerball lottery winner from California.
After three months of rollovers − from April to July − Powerball again hit the billion-dollar mark July 18, 2023, when no one matched all five numbers plus the Powerball in the Monday, July 17, drawing. A single ticket purchased in California eventually won Powerball on Wednesday, July 20, for $1.08 billion. The identity of the winner(s) has not been revealed as of Aug. 1, 2023.
Contributing: N’dea Yancey-Bragg, Orlando Mayorquin,Mike Snider,Thao Nguyen,Claire Thornton, USA TODAY; Nate Chute, Austin American-Statesman
Sangalang is a lead digital producer for USA TODAY Network-Florida. Follow her on Twitter or Instagram at @byjensangalang. Support local journalism. Consider subscribing to a Florida newspaper.
This article originally appeared on Florida Today: $2 billion lottery winner took lump sum. What he did with prize money