Drowned Man Washes up on Beach With Winning Lottery Ticket in His Wallet

A Michigan man has died just days after winning big at the lottery. The body of Gregory Jarvis, 57, was found by a local resident washed up on a private beach in the Saginaw Bay in Caseville on Friday morning.

According to WJRT, while an autopsy confirmed he drowned, police were initially concerned after finding a winning lottery ticket in his wallet.

Jarvis, who was a regular lottery player, had been in line for a $45,000 payout after winning the jackpot on the Michigan Lottery Club Keno add-on game "The Jack."

Dawn Talaski, the owner of the Blue Water Inn which Jarvis frequented, says he was "super excited" after winning the big money prize back on September 13.

However, when she next saw him on the night of the 19th, he had yet to claim his prize.

"He couldn't cash it because he didn't have a social security card at all, it wasn't any good, so he applied for a new one," Talaski told the news outlet.

Under Michigan Lottery rules anyone claiming a prize in excess of $600 must provide "a valid government issued picture identification" along with "proof" of their social security number.

As a result, Jarvis was waiting for a new social security card to arrive in the post.

Despite the delay, Talaski recalled Jarvis buying a round of drinks that night. That proved to be the last time anyone is thought to have seen Jarvis alive.

When he failed to reappear at the bar for the rest of the week, Talaski recalls staff at the bar beginning to suspect "something is wrong."

While he had been known to take trips away for work, their concerns grew when Jarvis' boss visited the bar last Wednesday looking for him after several days without contact.

Two days later, his body washed ashore near a boat which was later identified as belonging to Jarvis.

An autopsy discovered head injuries consistent with the police theory Jarvis slipped, fell and hit his head before ending up in the water, where he drowned.

Caseville Police Chief Kyle Romzek told Newsweek: "We never suspected foul play but because he had won money playing Club Keno an autopsy was performed the right away that afternoon.

"We believe he was working on his boat to secure it when he slipped and hit his head causing him to fall into the water. The lottery ticked was still on his person when he was found."

A popular, well-liked regular at the Blue Water Inn, according to Talaski, Jarvis had been planning to use the money to visit his sister and father. The $45,000-winning ticket has since been passed on to his relatives.

Update 9/29/21, 11:23 a.m. ET: This article was updated to include comment from Caseville Police.

A lottery ticket in the U.S.
Stock image of a lottery ticket. A man who drowned was found with a $45,000 winning ticket in his pocket. Michael Burrell/Getty