East Texans flock to get rich

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - The odds are one in 175 million to hit the jackpot. But those odds aren't stopping droves of people from opening their wallets to make a $2 investment that could yield a big payout.

Six numbers stand between someone and $550 million. And as usual, that big money is enticing people who don't usually gamble to buy a ticket.

"Well we normally don't play the lottery but my work and a couple of my friends decided to get together and we're going to buy a ticket," Teresa Richey said.

Mary Fowler wants to be shocked during tonight's drawing, but in a good way.

"I hope that I'm the one that gets struck by lightning or win the lotto because that's my chances because those are my odds I think," Fowler said.

Fowler's electric strategy?

"I just used the birth dates of myself and my two children," she said.

The piece of paper could be your ticket to half a billion dollars and people have been lining up all day hoping their numbers will be the lucky ones.

"I come up here to get some ice, take my clothes to the cleaners and pick up the winning powerball ticket," said John Beaty. "You know everybody loves a winner."

And the only thing more fun than winning, is planning what to do with the dough.

"I'd probably pay off the house, get the kids through college, pay off their homes," Richey said. "At first I'd probably have a whole lot of fun then you know then invest it."

"I can't even fathom," Fowler said. "I've always dreamed of traveling so I'd probably do some traveling and my children. I'd help my children and all of my family."

"I'd give most of it away for sure," Beaty said. "That's a lot of money."

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