It was a split-second act of kindness that may have cost a Florida family $590 million.
Mindy Crandell, 34, says that she and her daughter allowed the eventual Powerball jackpot winner, 84-year-old Gloria C. Mackenzie, cut ahead of them in line at a Zephyrhills, Fla., grocery store to buy lottery tickets.
Mackenzie went on to become the largest single winner in the history of American lottery.
The cashier allowed Crandell the opportunity to reclaim her rightful place in line, ABC News reports, but Crandell declined, allowing Mackenzie to go ahead of them. And apparently, the big winner knows it.
“While in line at Publix, another player was kind enough to let me go ahead of them in line to purchase the winning Quick Pick ticket,” Mackenzie said in a statement released by lottery officials.
But Crandell is not bitter about her decision, saying that it provides her 10-year-old daughter Mallory (who identified Mackenzie as the woman in front of them in line when she claimed her prize) an important lesson.
“Sometimes it’s better to be patient than rich,” Crandell says her daughter remarked after the news broke. “I knew we were teaching our daughter the right thing.”
Mackenzie has denied requests for an interview and has not disclosed plans for the money, which she elected to take in a lump sum.
Do you think it’s better to be patient than rich? Should Mackenzie give some of the money to the Crandell family? Tell us what you think in the comments below.