OLYMPIA, Wash. — A woman who won the fifth-largest jackpot in Powerball history is a longtime Boeing worker who was inspired to buy the lucky ticket when she saw the jackpot hit $747 million — just days after the company delivered its final 747 jumbo jet.
Becky Bell, of Auburn, Washington, said in news release issued by state lottery officials Friday that she had already purchased one ticket when she went grocery shopping with her daughter on Sunday, Feb. 5, and saw on a vending machine display that the prize had reached $747 million.
Bell normally spends $20 per week on lottery tickets, but this was a sign: “I had to buy one more ticket,” she said.
It proved to be the sole winning ticket for what turned out to be a $754.6 million jackpot.
Bell has worked for Boeing in Auburn as a supply chain analyst for nearly 36 years, according to the news release.
Less than a week before she bought the winning ticket, Boeing had delivered its 1,574th and final 747 jumbo jet to cargo carrier Atlas Air.
The morning after the drawing, she saw a news story about the winning ticket being sold in Auburn and thought, “That could be me,” she said. But she didn't immediately have time to check her numbers before a 6:20 a.m. meeting.
After it, she woke up her son and daughter, and she called another daughter, to check and re-check them.
“I’ve never won more than $20 in my life,” said Bell. “So you can imagine my shock when I realized what had just happened. I just broke down and cried.”