A regular customer in O'Fallon, Missouri gave a Powerball ticket as a tip to a bartender, who then said it was a pretty common gesture for that particular person to gift lottery tickets to others as tips.
Taylor Russey received a Powerball ticket from a customer who has been known to frequently give out lottery tickets to everyone. She said, "One of the regulars will buy the rest of the regulars in the bar lottery tickets every now and then, especially when it's high, and he did that on Saturday - he bought all of us lottery tickets."
The following day, the bar's lottery terminal told employees that they had sold a winning ticket worth $50,000 for the previous night's drawing.
Russey recalled, "I was like, ‘Guys, who won all this money and didn't tell anybody?'"
When she went to the terminal to scan her ticket, to her surprise she was told to claim her prize at a lottery office because she has the winning ticket worth $50,000.
The numbers on her ticket matched four of the five white-ball numbers drawn on October 19, plus the Powerball. The winning numbers on that draw were 14, 27, 29, 59, 65, and the Powerball was 12. The ticket was bought at Bleacher's Bar, 454 Highway P, in O'Fallon, Missouri.
Russey's ticket is the 40th $50,000 winner sold in Missouri and the second sold in O'Fallon this 2019. Back in 2016, a Missouri bartender won a $439,000 ticket, also from a tip. The winner that time was Sherry Miles from Rocky Mount, who said she planned to keep her job and use the cash to help pay off her home and then remodel it afterwards.
You could say in this story that the bartender was left a $50,000 (£38,800) tip in the form of a lottery ticket - how cool is that?
Russey said that the first person she called when she learned of her amazing win was the customer who tipped her the ticket. She said, "He was happy for me."
Russey says she plans to keep her job at Bleacher's Bar, where she has worked for about 3 years, and that the only thing on her mind right now when asked how she would spend her money is that first of all, she would really want to get some dental work that isn't covered by her insurance.