Man's Fortune Cookie Pays Off Bigger Than Anticipated

NC's Gabriel Fierro used numbers inside cookie to play Mega Millions, won $4M
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 2, 2022 10:25 AM CST
Guy Plays Fortune Cookie Numbers, Wins $4M Lottery
North Carolina Mega Millions lottery tickets are seen in Burlington, NC, on July 1, 2016.   (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)

Some fortune cookies predict good fortune. Others apparently directly deliver it. That was the case for North Carolina's Gabriel Fierro, who won a $4 million Mega Millions prize after playing the numbers he found inside a fortune cookie, WSLS reports. Per the North Carolina Education Lottery, Fierro—a 60-year-old disabled veteran from Cornelius who served 32 years in the Army, including time in Iraq—and his wife ate in mid-January at the Red Bowl Asian Bistro in Charlotte, as they do a few times a month. "On a whim," Fierro says he decided to use the numbers he found inside his fortune cookie on a Mega Millions ticket he purchased online for $2, with an extra $1 thrown in to make it a "Megaplier" ticket that would multiply any winnings.

His $3 investment paid off. Fierro ended up matching all five balls in the Jan. 18 game to win $1 million, which was quadrupled into a $4 million win, per CNN. Fierro describes himself as "dumbfounded" when he got the email informing him of his jackpot, adding that he and his wife, after realizing it wasn't a joke or scam, "started running around the house, screaming like a bunch of banshees," per the lottery. Fierro took home a lump sum of $2,840,401 after taxes. For now he's staying mum on what he's going to do with his newfound winnings, other than invest it, though he did concede there was one thing he wanted to purchase after leaving the lottery office. "We are going to buy some champagne on the way home," he told lottery officials. (More lottery winner stories.)

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