Ray Buxton, the winner of the $425 million Powerball lottery, wants to use his new found fortune to travel and start a foundation to do good by fighting child hunger and promoting pediatric health and education.
Buxton claimed his prize today from the California Lottery and is still overwhelmed with excitement. “Unbelievable” is the best word, he said, to describe his winning the sixth largest Powerball jackpot in history.
“Once the initial shock passed I couldn’t sleep for days,” is how the senior citizen described his feelings after realizing on Feb. 19 that he was sole ticket winner.
Since winning, he said, he has sat in front his computer in disbelief frequently re-checking the numbers across multiple sources. While validating the numbers at the California Lottery web site, he came across the “I Won! Now What? Winners Handbook,” and started to put a plan in motion. As advised in the handbook, it took some time to solidify legal and financial representation.
Buxton said his short term goals are to “spend time with my family and friends, start a charity and consult with professionals on how to pragmatically utilize this windfall.”
“My longer term plan is trying to find a way to live a normal and discreet life,” Buxton added.
Who was the first person he told about winning? Nobody, he said.
“Sitting on a ticket of this value was very scary. It’s amazing how a little slip of paper can change your life. I’m going to enjoy my new job setting up a charitable foundation focused on the areas of pediatric health, child hunger and education,” he added.
Buxton estimates he has been playing the lottery for 20 years. He beat the odds, which were one in 175 million, to become the winner of the $425.3 million Powerball Lottery on Feb. 19. He purchased his ticket at the Dixon Landing Chevron in Milpitas. His winning Powerball numbers were 17, 49, 54, 35, and 1, with a Powerball number of 34.
He said played the lottery regularly under the mantra: “You can’t win if you don’t play.” The Feb. 19 Powerball jackpot was big – so he decided to test his luck twice purchasing a second ticket for the week’s draw. He had previously purchased an entry for the draw, but luckily chose to purchase a second Powerball ticket while picking up food at the Subway inside Milpitas Chevron on California Circle. It was a smart choice because he ended up matching six of six Powerball numbers to win.
He has selected the cash option, which according to Lottery officials, is around $242.2 million before Federal taxes.
Buxton waited until today to claim his prize. Since winning in February, he has been working with his attorney Susan von Herrmann at the law firm of Schiff Hardin LLP to establish bank accounts, a charity, and work on tax issues.
Buxton does not want to do media interviews at this time and referred all media to his public relations representative Sam Singer of Singer Associates Public Affairs and Public Relations in San Francisco. Phone: 415-227-9700. Email: Singer@SingerSF.com