SOMERS, N.Y. -- A big tip from a customer led Somers gas station attendant Darwin Morales to make a decision that made him a millionaire.
The 25-year-old matched the first five numbers from the May 4 Powerball drawing and won $1 million, according to a press release from The New York Lottery. Morales received an oversized check Tuesday in Fishkill from New York Lottery's Yolanda Vega. Morales said it was a dream come true but it almost never happened.
“I got off work and was talking with another attendant about how big the jackpot was for that night and it reminded me to play,” Morales said in the press release. “I got a $20 tip from a customer that day. I spent $14 of it on my Powerball ticket. It was a tip, so I spent more."
Morales purchased his winning ticket at the Bedford Shell at 848 S. Bedford St. in Bedford. The native of Guatemala moved to New York seven years ago to be with family, according to the release.
“My town in Guatemala is so small it doesn’t even have a name,” he said in the release. “There are 17 houses in my town, that’s it. I moved here because my family is here. New York is a magic place for a lot of people.”
Morales will receive his $1,000,000 prize in a single net payment totaling $611,800, according to the release. A pair from Middletown also received an oversized check Tuesday in Fishkill for a drawing held on May 11, according to the release.
The New York Lottery contributed $70,858,076.81 in aid to school districts throughout Westchester County during the fiscal year 2012-13, according to the release.