“I’m really sorry boss. I hit the jackpot. I don’t think I’m going to come in today, tomorrow, or ever.”
~Steve Tran, Mega Millions winner
SACRAMENTO - The winner who will split the second largest Mega Millions jackpot in U.S. history has come forward in California.
Lottery officials say Steve Tran arrived late Thursday afternoon at the California Lottery District Office in Sacramento. He will split the $648M jackpot with a woman from Georgia. Both will receive $324 million apiece, and if they take the cash payout option, the lump sum will be $173.8 million each (before taxes.)
So why did it take so long for Tran to claim his winnings? He says he added the Lottery ticket to a pile of other tickets he purchased in multiple other towns as a delivery driver. He says it was just sitting in his top drawer. Meanwhile, Tran and his family went on vacation. Then just this Monday, Tran woke up at 3:00 am, "I woke up in the middle of the night. I remembered, I think I went to San Jose.”
Tran said he checked his tickets and discovered he had hit the jackpot. He said he phoned his boss and left a message that went something like this: “I’m really sorry boss. I hit the jackpot. I don’t think I’m going to come in today, tomorrow, or ever.”
Tran has 60 days to select his payment option.