Cancer-Battling Immigrant Wins $1.3 Billion Powerball Jackpot with Wife and Friend


In a high-stakes game of chance, a Laotian immigrant in the throes of a cancer battle along with his wife and a close friend have been named the triumphant winners of the $1.3 billion Powerball jackpot. A press conference held by the Oregon Lottery officials on a breezy Monday revealed the lucky trio who scooped one of the biggest winnings in the history of the literal game of fortune.

Cheng Saephan, a resilience-embodying 46-year-old man, his devoted wife Duanpen Saephan, 37, and their confidante Liza Chao, 55, emerged as the grand winners of the drawing held on the sun-kissed morning of April 6. The Saephans call the bustling city of Portland home, while Chao hails from the quieter setting of Milwaukie. As determined by the lottery officials, the $422 million windfall, cleared of tax withholdings, will be dispersed equally among the three.

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In the crowded press conference speckled by the flash of eager cameras, Cheng Saephan was the only winner from the triumphant trio to address the gathering. Immigrated from Laos in the heartwarming summer of 1994, Saephan made America his home. However, his journey has been marred by a relentless combat with cancer that started in 2016.

In the dim-lit room filled with anticipation, Saephan quietly recounted his previous employment as a dedicated machinist in the aerospace industry prior to the cruel diagnosis. Asked about the moment he realized he was now a billionaire, Saephan conveyed relief that his family’s financial worries were over.

“How am I going to have time to spend all of this money?”, was what crowned his thoughts following the staggering revelation. Regularly indulging in the occasional lottery game, Saephan and his friend Chao had split $200 worth of tickets for this particular drawing.

At night, he even placed a piece of paper inscribed with Powerball numbers under his pillow in hope of a stroke of divine favor. He’d harbored hopes of a modest jackpot win, but this great fortune was beyond his wildest dreams.

“I prayed to God to help me,” said a visibly emotional Saephan. “My kids are still young and I’m not in the best of health.”

His first coveted indulgence with this newfound fortune? A dream home amid the breathtaking beauty of Oregon, shared Saephan with the room brimming with reporters.

This whopping haul by Saephan and Chao hasn’t just turned their fortunes around, it’s also made history. It’s the fourth grandest jackpot in Powerball’s annals, making it the third to break records within a span of just one year.

The $1.3 billion bagged by Saephan trumps the highest Powerball winnings won in Oregon previously – a $340 million windfall dating back to 2005.

The suspense of the crucial Powerball numbers ended when they were disclosed as 22, 27, 44, 52, and 69, with the Powerball number pegged at 9 on the fateful morning of April 6, with Saephan confessing that these were quick-pick numbers.

Despite the astronomical odds of winning the impressive Powerball jackpot – a miniscule chance of one in 292,201,338 in fact – Saephan and his lottery companions have indeed hit the jackpot, resonating again the age-old adage, fortune favors the brave. The glimmer of hope that a Powerball ticket clutched in their hands offered transform their lives in a way few can imagine.