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Powerball Jackpot Winner Revealed

A local Passaic man is the lucky winner of a Powerball ticket worth $338 million.

Eagle Liquors in Passaic
Eagle Liquors in Passaic (Ilya Hemlin, Townsquare Media)

Pedro Quezada went to Eagle Liquors in Passaic and had the ticket validated around 4:30 p.m. Monday. The liquor store is where the ticket was sold. The 44-year-old owns Apple Deli and Grocery on 8th Street.The father of five bought lottery tickets once a day at the liquor store before hitting the fourth largest jackpot in the Powerball’s history.

Sunil Sethi, the owner of Eagle Liquors, is as excited to have his modest storefront thrust into national news as if he would have won the jackpot himself.

Sethi says while Eagle Liquors has sold some big lotto winners ranging from eighty thousand to one hundred and fifty thousand, it all pales to the $338 million dollar jackpot (221 if you take the lump sum) the mystery customer will get.

“It was always our dream to sell the biggest ticket and we did it. There’s no words for that.”

As per lotto regulations, the location where the winning ticket was sold gets a $10,000 prize of their own, which Sethi already has big plans for.

“We are going to invest in the employees, we will give them a bonus. We will also invest in the store and try to do something to boost the lotto sales.”

While it seems like everybody has their own ideas of what they would do with that kind of money, neighborhood resident Daphne Robinson reminds Quezada to stay grounded.

“Do the right thing with it [the money], don’t forget where you came from, and give back to your community.”

Sunil Sethi (L) and Pravin Mankodia (R)
Sunil Sethi (L) and Pravin Mankodia (R) (Ilya Hemlin, Townsquare Media)

Pravin Mankodia has worked at Eagle Liquors for seven years and sold the winning ticket. He says mostly regulars come in to buy tickets, however he has no idea who it could be.

While Eagle Liquors caters to a neighborhood of regulars, Sethi says he is prepared for the notoriety of selling a jackpot ticket. Specifically, people coming in to buy a lotto ticket, hoping to replicate the good fortune.

“We are prepared for more traffic, we’re getting more manpower ready.”

Saturday’s Powerball is the fourth biggest jackpot drawing of its kind. The winning numbers were 17, 29, 31, 52, 53 and Powerball 31.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report)

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