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What’s the fastest way to get to $688 million? Take the A train.
One of two tickets that hit all the numbers in Saturday’s massive Powerball lottery was sold at a deli in Harlem — and the manager thinks the mysterious lucky winner is one of his regulars.
“We always have the same customers,” said Carlos Diaz, 52, of the West Harlem Deli on Fifth Avenue near West 126th Street. “We don’t really get new traffic.”
Diaz, who was elated the deli sold the ticket, said it’s good news for all of Harlem.
“I’m happy for the community, for the guy who won,” he said. “For the store, too, because, you know, it puts you on the spot. In the spotlight.”
While one ticket was sold in the heart of America’s largest city, the second with the winning numbers — 8, 12, 13, 19 and 27 and Powerball 4 — was sold at a remote convenience store in the Iowa town of Redfield, population 800.
As in Harlem, it was unknown who bought the ticket.
José Espinosa, 41, owns the Harlem deli with his father and told The Associated Press that he knows he sold the lucky ticket because “I’m always here. I live here.”
One local resident suggested the winner should take the cash and head for greener pastures.
“Whoever it is just got their family out of Harlem and into a big-ass house,” Michael Williams, 57, said.
Others hoped the winner would use the windfall to give back to the community.
“I hope it went to a deserving person with a humble heart,” said neighborhood resident Angel Rivera, 49. “Just do us a favor and give back to this beautiful city.”
Another neighbor, Maria Lopez, 29, added of the lucky ticket-holder, “I’m happy for them. This area, too. I wouldn’t mind some of that money thrown my way.”
If the two winners go with the lump-sum payment, they will get $198.1 million each. Going the annuity route, they’ll each get $343.9 million apiece over 29 years.
That’s before the feds shave 24 percent right off the top for taxes, of course.
“You see how many people go in there and buy a ticket?” Charles Jenkins, 40 of Harlem, said.
“This guy best bring some bodyguards when he claims that ticket!”
The drawing came four days after someone won a $1.537 billion Mega Millions jackpot, the second-largest in lotto history.
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