Longtime Mahopac resident Bill Mascio won a $1 million-prize in a recent Powerball drawing, and he says his long-gone German shepherd is to blame for missing the jackpot.
That's because Bill, 60, has played the same numbers—the numbers of his wife's and three daughters' birthdays, as well as his own—for about 20 years. On Aug. 8, at the Mobil Mart at Baldwin Place and Route 6 in Mahopac, he purchased his regular single set of numbers for that day's Powerball drawing.
The first five, 03, 07, 11, 15 and 28, were correct. Bill picked 29, the dog's birthday, for the last, which he later found out was Powerball 12. He would have walked away with over $200 million, the jackpot, if Rocky had been born on the "right day." Instead, he claimed the second place prize of $1 million.
"I needed a sixth, so I had to pick the dog's ... I'm still blaming the," he said with a chuckle. Bill and family members gathered with Gretchen Dizen and folks from the New York Lottery Draw Team for the check presentation at the Mobil Mart Thursday morning.
"I'm not greedy, I'm just happy I won whatever I won," he added.
Bill, a steam-fitter who has been out of work for a few months, is splitting the money with his wife, Kathy Mascio, 55. She works in the business office for the Peekskill City School District. Each is slated to walk away with $330,900 after required withholdings.
Kathy's portion of the money will go to paying the mortgage, upgrading the house and possibly purchasing a new car. The couple's three daughters, all of whom live in Mahopac, may also receive some of the cash.
Bill has already bought a generator. The only other plans he has at the moment include buying a weed-wacker.
"It wasn't life-changing, it just takes the edge off of life," he said, adding that even though he was shocked when he realized he won, he did expect to win a "substantial" amount of money at some point in his life.
The win came as a surprise to store employees. Mack Karki, the manager at Mobil Mart, said Bill comes by everyday. Karki first heard about the prize while checking numbers online, and he was hoping he knew the lucky winner.
"I was really happy," he told Patch. "I was happy we knew the person."
Karki said he saw an uptick in lotto players in the days the followed Bill's purchase—with many folks asking about the win. He hopes the trend continues.
"It's good for business," he said.