Monday, April 9, 2007
For most people, the thought of winning the lottery is an exciting one.
However, it appears that for many of the "lucky," winning the lottery starts a downward spiral which may end in death, criminal conduct, and lawsuits. See For lottery winners, trouble followed fortune, USA Today, Nov. 28, 2005, at 3A.
A detailed report about one of these lucky-unlucky individuals, Jack Whittaker, appears in Martin Bashir & Sara Holmberg, Powerball Winner Says He's Cursed, ABC News, April 7, 2007. Here are some of the key parts of Jack's story:
- Learned he won $315 million in Powerball lottery on December 25, 2002.
- Intended to use money for the common good such as to feed people who didn't have food and build churches.
- Gave $15 million of construction of two churches.
- Established Jack Whittaker Foundation, making over $50 million in grants to individuals for houses, cars, etc.
- Defended over 400 claims from his construction business, all of which were made since he won the lottery.
- Began drinking excessively to console himself about the lawsuits which were damaging his company's reputation.
- Spent excessive amounts on his granddaughter who then became a heavy user of illegal drugs and ended up dead from an unknown cause.
Special thanks to David S. Luber for bringing this article to my attention.