5 Lottery Winners Who Learned the Real Value of Money

Your big windfall could be just around the corner, but remember that money can’t buy happiness — and it apparently can’t buy common sense either. Here are 5 lottery winners who burned through their fortunes in record time and ended up as poor (or poorer) than they were before they struck gold.

Michael Carroll

Michael Carroll was only 19 and working as a garbage man when he won the British National Lottery back in 2002, scooping up a jackpot of £9.7 million ($14.4 million US). Dubbed the ‘Lotto Lout’ by the British press, Carroll brazenly spent his money on booze, drugs and hookers as well as a house in Swaffam (where he charmed the neighbors by catapulting steel balls through their car windows and hosting demolition derbies) and a Mercedes (which he emblazoned with the words ‘King of Chavs’).

Within ten years, the money had run dry and Carroll was reapplying for his old position as a garbage man. Today, Carroll has cleaned up his lifestyle and is making only $300 a week at a cookie factory but he admits he’s much happier. “I treasure those wages more than any £9million fortune” Carroll says. “I’ve only got one chance left – I’d have been dead in six months if I’d carried on that lifestyle of drinking and drug taking.”