Lottery Winner Jack Whittaker's Losing Ticket

Ten years ago, Jack Whittaker, a self-made businessman, became the biggest single winner in lottery history. And that’s when his luck ran out

Jack Whittaker, a 55-year-old contractor from Scott Depot, W. Va., had worked his way up from backcountry poverty to build a water-and-sewer-pipe business that employed over 100 people. He was a millionaire several times over. But when he awoke at 5:45 a.m. on Christmas morning in 2002, everything he’d built in his life held only passing significance next to a scrap of paper in his worn leather wallet—a $1 Powerball lottery ticket bearing the numbers 5, 14, 16, 29, 53, and 7.

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