CLIVE, Iowa — A Sioux City man said he didn’t sleep the night after he discovered he’d won a $50,000 Powerball prize.
Tim Bottaro matched four white balls and the Powerball in the Oct. 17th drawing.
“I’m relieved that it’s out of my hands and it’s official,” Bottaro told lottery officials Oct. 29 as he claimed his prize at the lottery’s regional office in Council Bluffs.
Bottaro, 60, purchased his winning ticket at Petro Mart, 1961 U.S. Highway 30 in Missouri Valley, but didn’t get a chance to check his ticket until more than a week after the drawing.
He said he found the ideal spot to store his ticket until he could redeem it.
“I put it in the freezer of my refrigerator because I figured it’s fireproof,” he said. “And who, if they break in, would ever look there? So I literally had cold cash.”
Bottaro, a lawyer, was one number away from winning that evening’s $378 million jackpot, but isn’t spending time wondering about what could’ve been.
“I had a friend say, ‘Oh, if you had one more number, you would’ve won” the jackpot, he said. “I said to him, ‘You know, I checked the odds, and it’s one in 913,000.’ I’m not complaining about anything, and I’m not thinking about woulda-coulda-shoulda.”
He said he hasn’t decided what he’ll do with his winnings, but he’ll never complain about bad luck again.
“‘Oh, just my luck’: I’ll never say that again,” he said.