UPDATE 2-Missouri manager shocked his store sold winning lottery ticket
(Adds quotes from employees, customers of Missouri store where one of the winning tickets was sold)
By Kevin Murphy
DEARBORN, Missouri Nov 29 (Reuters) - The manager of a Missouri gas station where one of two winning tickets in the record $587.5 million Powerball lottery was sold said on Thursday that he was shocked to learn he might have handed the lucky ticket to a prospective multi-millionaire.
The two winning tickets were sold at the g as station and sandwich shop in the farming town of Dearborn, Missouri, about 30 miles north of Kansas City, and a food store in Fountain Hills, Arizona, on the outskirts of Phoenix.
Although the identit ies of the ticket-holders w ere not immediately a nnounced, they p icked the winning numbers announced at the drawing We dnesday night: 5, 16, 22, 23, 29, and the Powerball number 6.
They will share an estimated $385 million after taxes if they opt to take the prize as a lump sum, or the $587.5 million can be paid out to them as annuities over three decades, the Multi-State Lottery Association said.
Kristi Williams, a clerk at the Trex Mart convenience store in Dearborn, s aid she and another employee high-fived each other when th ey le arned th e m orning af ter the drawing th at one of the two winning tickets had been purchased there.
Store manager Chris Nauerz , who was working Wednes day when the lucky ticket was purchased, called the news "shocking." He said the station gets a mix of customers, both locals from Dearborn, population 500, and truck drivers passing through on nearby Interstate 29.
"It's pretty crazy to think somebody locally could possibly be a millionaire and not know it yet," Nauerz said. "And the fact that I may have even handed over the ticket is even wilder."
The popular lottery - which is played in 42 states, Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands - had not had a winner for two months.
After no one won the top prize in Saturday's drawing, the pot grew by about $263 million to $587.5 million amid a national frenzy to buy tickets.
Mary Neubauer, a spokeswoman for the Iowa Lottery, where Powerball is based, said people from around the world called hoping for a chance to play but were told they had to be in a participating location to buy a ticket.
The previous Powerball top prize of $365 million was won in 2006 by ConAgra slaughterhouse workers in Nebraska. The largest-ever U.S. lottery jackpot, the $656 million Mega Millions drawing, was shared by three winning tickets last March. (Additional reporting by Colleen Jenkins, David Bailey, Mary Slosson and David Schwartz; Writing by James B. Kelleher; Editing by Vicki Allen and Greg McCune)
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