Nov. 12 (UPI) -- A North Carolina man said he forgot about the scratch-off lottery tickets he bought before a trip to Colorado and ended up flying home with a $1 million winner in his pocket.
Yaheem Jones, of Creswell, told North Carolina Education Lottery officials he bought some scratch-offs from Marks Supermarket in Creswell just before departing on a trip to Denver.
"I bought the tickets before I left for Denver and just threw them in my book bag," Jones said. "I flew all the way to Denver with them and everything and I didn't even know I was a winner until a couple of days later."
Jones said he was cleaning out his bag before flying home when he rediscovered the forgotten tickets.
"I had the flight pass, my itinerary, my checked bag passes and I see the tickets," he recalled.
Jones scratched the tickets off and discovered one of them, a $10 Red Hot Riches ticket, was a $1 million top prize winner.
The winner said he ended up flying home to North Carolina with the winning ticket in his pocket.
"I didn't take my hand out of my pocket," he said. "Not one whole time!"
Jones said the prize money will "help a lot" and the majority will go into savings.