An 82-year-old Paso Robles resident who served during the Korean War is the recent winner of the $78 million California Lottery ticket purchased at a local convenience store.
Charles Hairston, whom Lottery officials described in a statement as a “laid-back kinda guy,” bought his ticket at One Stop Food and Convenience at 703 Spring St. in Paso Robles for the Nov. 1 drawing.
Hairston is a retired welder who served several years in the Army during the Korean War.
“He said while he thought winning was ‘pretty nice,’ he just ‘stayed home and took it easy that night,’ ” the statement from Lottery officials said.
His winning numbers in the Mega Millions jackpot were 39, 31, 46, 20, 27; the Mega number was 36. One Stop will receive a bonus of $390,000 for selling the jackpot-winning ticket.
Hairston told lottery officials now that he’s won, he’ll “stick to my own business and try to be smart with (the money). Other than that, I don’t know what I’ll do with it.”
Paso Robles attorney Paul E. Clark said that he had spoken with Hairston. But the winner is “overwhelmed” by his situation and wasn’t ready yet to speak publicly.
“He has worked hard his whole life,” Clark said. “It’s a life-changer for him.”
Clark said that he’s happy for Hairston and isn’t worried about his ability to handle such a large sum.