Man keeps his promise made 30 years ago and shares $22M winnings with his friend

That’s a good friend!

Twenty-eight years ago, best friends Tom Cook and Joe Feeney made a promise to share the Powerball jackpot if they won.

Tom picked a ticket worth $22 million in late June of 2020. It was a promise he remembered.

In the June 10 drawing, Tom bought a $2 winning ticket from a Synergy Coop store. Immediately after purchasing it, he checked the numbers while eating breakfast.

The numbers “froze” Tom’s mind. His wife was shocked when he handed her the ticket.

As Tom realized this, he remembered the promise he and Joe made almost three decades ago. He called his friend to share the life-changing news.

I asked him, ‘Are you jerking my bobber?’” Joe, who is an avid fisherman, says of his reaction when he saw the lottery’s press release.

Overall, the odds of winning were 1 in 292,201,338. He wasn’t kidding at all.


Since 1992, the duo has played Powerball every week. While imagining what they would do if they won the money, they made the promise to each other.

Although it happened decades ago, Tom says, “A handshake is a handshake.”

He’s a great guy.

After winning, Tom resigned and retired immediately after giving his two weeks’ notice. Since Joe was already retired from the fire department, all he had to do was have fun.

Approximately $16.7 million was given to Tom and Joe in cash. Following federal and state taxes, each guy took home around $5.7 million.

Both of them are looking forward to spending more time with their families as a result of the huge winnings.

Having realized he and his friend could now do whatever they wanted, Tom couldn’t imagine a better way to retire.

Grandchildren and great-grandchildren were very important to him. With all that money, he could share new experiences with them.

“I have grandchildren and great-grandchildren and look forward to spending time with them, not worrying about where we can go and if we can afford it,” he told PEOPLE.


Together with their wives, Tom and Joe often drove a Chrysler PT Cruiser.

Winning meant they could afford newer, better cars!

Wisconsin’s 18th Powerball jackpot was won by Tom and Joe. A huge $768.4 million jackpot winner was announced in March 2019. WOn the list of most frequently winning states, Wisconsin ranks fourth all-time.

In case you’re wondering if loyal Powerball players still play after winning, the answer is yes. After winning the lottery, Tom bought two more tickets.

“What do I have to lose?” he said.

However, Tom and Joe aren’t the only winners. $100,000 was also awarded to the Synergy Coop that sold Tom the winning ticket. What a stroke of luck!

Watch Tom and Joe’s interview below!

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