Marine veteran finds out he won $1 million lottery on flight home to North Carolina

Marine veteran discovers he won $1 million lottery on flight home

A Marine veteran won $1 million from a North Carolina lottery scratch-off ticket he had forgotten about buying.

“I bought the tickets before I left for Denver and just threw them in my book bag,” Yaheem Jones said in a statement. “I flew all the way to Denver with them and everything and I didn’t even know I was a winner until a couple of days later.”

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He was cleaning out his book bag getting ready to fly home when he noticed the tickets.

“I had the flight pass, my itinerary, my checked bag passes and I see the tickets,” Jones said.

He scratched them off one by one, finally revealing the $1 million prize off a $10 Red Hot Riches ticket.

“At first, I didn’t believe it. I thought it was a joke,” Jones said. “I didn’t take my hand out of my pocket. Not one whole time.”

Jones, who works as a property manager, claimed the prize Tuesday. He chose a lump-sum payment, pocketing $424,503 after taxes.

Jones, who served as a combat engineer in the Marines, said he plans to add the winnings to his savings.