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Johnston County woman has unforgettable birthday after $1 million Powerball win

March 1, 2023 Posted by NC Lottery at 9:46 AM

Leslie Husted of Benson had a memorable 58th birthday as it came the day after she learned of a $1 million Powerball win.

“I won’t forget this birthday that’s for sure,” Husted said.

While sitting in her living room watching the news, Husted heard about an unclaimed $1 million Powerball ticket in her town.

“I was sitting there watching and I just got this funny feeling that it could be us,” Husted recalled. “When they said, ‘Nobody has come forward yet,’ I started shaking.”

Husted said she called her husband before she checked the ticket.

“I just told him, ‘I think we might have won a million dollars,’” she said.

Husted bought her $2 ticket for the Feb. 20 drawing from Murphy Express on N.C. 42 West in Garner. She said her husband told her to go look at their numbers to see if they won.

“I went to go check the ticket and then I just started screaming,” Husted laughed.

Her winning ticket matched numbers on all five white balls in the drawing. Husted said she and her husband used their anniversary date for one of the numbers and then picked the rest at random. The odds of matching all five white balls are 1 in 11.6 million.

Husted claimed her prize at lottery headquarters Tuesday and, after required federal and state tax withholdings, took home $712,501. She said she wants to save the winnings for her retirement.

Wednesday’s Powerball drawing offers a $143 million jackpot, or $73 million in cash. The odds of winning a Powerball jackpot are 1 in 292 million. Players can buy Powerball tickets at any retail location or with Online Play through the lottery’s website or with the NC Lottery Official Mobile App.

The N.C. Education Lottery’s Play Smart™ program educates and empowers North Carolinians to make smart decisions when they play the lottery. Visit to learn how the Play Smart program helps someone create a game plan to keep lottery play fun. If playing the lottery has become more than a game, visit for free, confidential help.


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3/02/2023 10:16 - Paula F.

Congratulations ??. Enjoy your future retirement. You deserve this.

3/02/2023 08:44 - Joe S.

Congratulations from Charlotte!

3/01/2023 01:44 - Katherine P.


3/01/2023 12:44 - Dawn L.

You've been blessed!!

3/01/2023 11:11 - Jane C.

Am so happy for you Husted. Enjoy your winnings and we’ll deserved!

3/01/2023 10:02 - Roger K.

Wow! Congratulations on your big win!

Buy, Scan, and Check tickets with the NC Lottery Official Mobile App.