Updated on January 16, 2023 by Ray Olsen
James and Bob Stocklas made the news when the two brothers won the lottery on the same day. The Stocklas brothers each bought their own tickets so it was a fascinating story when they both won. But it was James who won the massive Florida Powerball jackpot.
Even though Bob didn’t win the jackpot he’s still lucky to have a brother that’s now a millionaire. I covered this story about the Stocklas brothers to find out if James shared his money with his brother and where the duo is today.
James and Bob Stocklas grew up in the Bethlehem Housing Authority and lived in a poor household. They lived in a small house with a metal shower and water was heated up by coals. James and Bob’s father, William, worked for Bethlehem Steel and their mother, Mary, was a homemaker.
Bob and James had a third brother who was named after their father. He served as a US Marine during the Vietnam war. He sadly passed away a few years after serving due to an illness from inhaling a chemical during his time in Vietnam.
When James was a teenager he worked as a sweeper for Stofanak Custom Cabinetry. He then went on to work for Bethlehem Steel as a millwright and stayed at the company for 10 years. Bob also worked at Bethlehem Steel for a time. James decided to run for district judge and spent 32 years on the bench.
The reason James and Bob Stocklas got so much media attention is because of their lottery wins. James won the Powerball jackpot and got $291 million (before taxes) whereas Bob won a mere $7. It was a strange coincidence that the brothers won the lottery on the same day.
James decided to take the lump sum option, probably because he was 67 years old at the time of winning. After taxes, James took home $191 million. On the other hand, Bob got to keep his full $7.
Bob and James bought their lottery tickets when coming back from a month-long fishing trip. The Stocklas brothers stopped at the Tom Thumb store in Marathon to buy a bag of ice and $10 worth of Florida lottery tickets.
James’ lottery strategy was to always buy tickets with his friend Barry Bartakovits if the jackpot rollover got big. The winning numbers on James’ ticket were 12-13-44-52-62 and the Powerball, 06.
James didn’t find out he had won the jackpot until he returned to Pennsylvania. He was having his morning breakfast with a friend at his favorite diner when he decided to check the numbers on his phone. He checked the numbers against his lottery ticket that he kept in his wallet.
He realized that the last row of numbers matched. In his excitement, he paid for everyone’s breakfast at the diner and proceeded to call his family to tell them the good news. He also claimed that he was shaking with excitement.
The first thing James had to do was collect his winnings. He called a friend who owned a private jet business to fly him and his family to Florida and back in one day. The cost of the flight was $20,000. James also stated that he would donate to charities and help his family financially.
He also split the winnings with his two friends so they got $40 million each. James also stated that he wanted to buy his son, Jimmy, a handicapped-accessible home because he was legally blind. James stated that he wanted to help his family but there were no reports on whether the former judge shared some of his fortunes with Bob.
Jame Stocklas has since retired from being a judge. The former judge stated that he disliked going to court at night and was the only reason he decided to retire. There are no news reports on where Bob Stocklas is and what James has been up to as of late.
Unfortunately, James experienced a tragedy when his son Jimmy unexpectedly died in 2018 from an opioid overdose. Jimmy’s mother, Linda, and daughter filed a lawsuit against Comfort Keepers of Irvine for negligence.
James and Bob Stocklas don’t have social media accounts. However, there were fake Instagram and Facebook profiles pretending to be the famous duo. These accounts claim that the Stocklas brothers are giving away part of their fortune. But these are major scams trying to steal money from internet users.
It was an excellent choice for James to take the lump sum option due to his age when he claimed his prize. He was also extremely generous and split his winnings with his two friends. James also wanted to take care of his family which is extremely noble of him.
There are many lottery winners such as Michael Carroll and Jack Whittaker that blew their jackpot winnings on alcohol, women, and drugs. But James Stocklas is the opposite and decided to help those around him.
In pictures, you can see how happy James and Bob Stocklas are and they seem to have a strong bond. I only hope that James is managing his finances well.
James gave his two friends $40 million each because he grew up with them so they were extremely close. The three friends would play the lottery together all the time. So James only felt it right to give them each a slice of the jackpot pie.
There are no latest reports on where James and Bob Stocklas are now. But there are also no reports of either of them passing away.
No, the two brothers don’t have Instagram or any other social media accounts. Any person claiming to be the two brothers is most likely a scam. You should report any scam accounts to your local authorities.
Although there aren’t any news reports on where James and Bob Stocklas are today I only hope that the two brothers are living a peaceful life. Unfortunately, the Stocklas brothers had to deal with scammers claiming to be them on Instagram and Facebook. The former Judge also experienced the loss of his son in 2018.
It would seem the Stocklas family are incredibly private so there are no further details about where the brothers are today and how they’re spending James’ fortune. I hope that James is taking care of Jimmy’s daughter and that she’s able to find peace after her father’s passing.