Winning the lottery can significantly reduce the level of stress in a person's life. Of course, that level of affluence also means winners can do anything they want. That freedom makes some people really weird.
Jack Whittaker: The Winner who Always Loses
Jack Whittaker's life offers a wealth of eccentric lotto history facts. After winning $314.9 million in a multi-state Powerball lottery, his lifestyle and poor choices lead him down a stranger-than-fiction path. In 2003, Whittaker was at a strip club when thieves stole $545,000 cash from his truck. A year later, thieves stole another $200,000 from his truck.
Luke Pittard's Big Bash
When Luke Pittard won $1.9 million in 2006, he spent it all in a year. During that time, he took a lavish trip to the Canary Islands, held a huge wedding and bought a house. Today he works at McDonald's. He doesn't seem fazed by it, though, since he says he's happy with his life.
Evelyn Adams Loses Her Winnings to Gambling
Evelyn Adams won the New Jersey lottery twice, netting her $5.4 million. Adams, however, was a compulsive gambler who lost most of her money in Atlantic City. The average daily sweepstakes winners don't usually have that kind of reverse luck.
Lottery Winner Gets Food Stamps
After winning $1 million in the Michigan lottery, Amanda Clayton still receives $200 in food stamps. She justifies this by saying she doesn't have a job and needs money to afford her two homes.
Janite Lee Kept Giving and Giving
Janite Lee, a 52-year-old Missourian, won $18 million. Like most lottery winners, she gave some of it to charity. Within a few years, though, she'd given it all away to universities, charities and political campaigns.
Suzanne Mullins Needs a Loan
Within five years of winning the lottery, Suzanne Mullins had to use future lottery payments as collateral on a $200,000 loan. Then she defaulted on the loan.
Billy Bob Harrell, Jr. Couldn't Say "No"
Billy Bob Harrell, Jr. was once a Pentecostal preacher who worked a part-time job at Home Depot. After winning the lottery, though, he became everyone's personal ATM. He gave away all his money in a few years because he couldn't say "no."
Michael Carroll Throws a Party
Michael Carroll worked as a garbage man until he won $15 million, which he then threw away on crazy parties. After partying away everything he had, Carroll reapplied for his old job in sanitation.
Viv Nicholson: Spend, Spend, Spend
Viv Nicholson famously claimed that she would "spend, spend, spend" her lottery winnings. So she did. During that time, she became an alcoholic, got married five times and spent time in a mental institution.
Ken Proxmire was a Good Old Boy
Ken Proxmire opened a car dealership with his brothers after winning the lottery. He also gave a lot of handouts to friends and relatives. Five years after winning the lottery, he filed for bankruptcy.