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Good Samaritan Returns $1 Million Lottery Ticket And Says He Doesn't Regret It

Tom Dorsey/Salina Journal / UPI

Sometimes when people find some loose change on the street, they won't hesitate to pocket the cash and go on their merry way. But what happens when the money is more than just a few dollars?

Although some individuals have said they've resented their lottery win, other people are praying for the day that their numbers are called.

However, since the odds are stacked up against you, (there's only about a one in 292,000,000 chance of winning the Power Ball) there are hundreds of thousands of useless lottery tickets purchased every day.

But that doesn't mean it never happens. On March 18, a regular customer at the Pit Stop gas station in Salina, Kansas bought a winning $1 million lottery ticket - but he was none the wiser.

And he would have been oblivious to his jackpot this entire time if it wasn't for an honest store clerk.

Andy Patel was working at the convenience store when the customer came in to see if any of his three tickets were winners. After the first two were checked, the man left the store without confirming the results of the third.

After Andy remembered there was a third ticket to check, the store clerk became shocked when realized he was holding million dollar ticket.

"After they left he realized, oh crap, there's another ticket on the thing, so he checked the other ticket and that's the one that ended up being a million dollar winner," said Kal Patel, whose parents own the Pit Stop gas station.

Andy quickly called Kal for help, and based on the information they had on the customer, immediately tried to track him down.

"They didn’t know they had the winning ticket, so they never would have known if I hadn’t found them," Kal told the Telegram. "But then you’d have to live through the guilt of that all your life."

Kal said he knew the area where the man lived, but when he drove to the neighborhood he wasn't able to identify his customer's residence solely based on his vehicle.

"I went into the neighborhood where I knew he lived, but I couldn’t find him,” he said. "Their cars weren’t outside or anything, and I couldn’t find their house, exactly which one it was."

But when all hope seemed to be lost, Kal spotted the customer and his wife in his car, and flagged him down with the good news.

"I showed them the ticket and told them they were winners," he said. "They started shaking. They couldn’t believe it."

Although some of Kal's friends have chastised him for returning the ticket, he said he doesn't regret his decision for a single second.

"Good deeds come back to help you, and bad deeds come back to haunt you,” he said. “It felt good to find it and then find them."

"If it had just been dropped and we didn’t know whose it was, then we wouldn’t have known where to look," Kal added. "But we did. It felt good to give it to them. And the praise we got back from everyone for doing this was really nice. They said it restored their faith in humanity."

And as it turns out, good deeds don't go unnoticed, as local law firm, DeVaughn James Injury Lawyers awarded both Kal and Andy the Helping Hand award, along with $1,200.

Andy Patel isn't the only lucky lottery winner either. Take a look at these people's good fortune:

[H/T: PEOPLE, The Garden City Telegram]

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