A 24-year-old Wisconsin resident was the winner of a $768.4 million US Powerball jackpot. It is the third-largest lottery jackpot win in United States history.
The winner, Manuel Franco, from Wisconsin, bought the ticket on March the 27th. He initially wanted to remain anonymous, but unfortunately, the state of Wisconsin where he stays, does not let people claim lottery winnings anonymously.
The winning entry was one of 10 entries that Manuel Franco had bought on his way home from work one day. He said that he was feeling "very lucky" the night he bought the entries, which is why he decided to purchase so many. He, however, didn't watch the US Powerball draw; instead, he later checked his entry numbers on an online lottery website and discovered that he was a winner.
"It was amazing. My heart started racing, and my blood was pumping. My body felt warm. I think I screamed for about five or ten minutes at least. It's a good thing that my neighbours didn't hear me," Franco told reporters.
He quit his job two days later but strangely, decided to wait nearly a month before going to claim his winnings. He said that he wanted to make sure that nobody else had won and that he wouldn't have to share his money before he got too excited.
What Will He Do With All of His Money?
He took the jackpot prize as a lump payment (instead of as an annuity), which worked out to the value of $477 million. He received roughly $326 million in his bank account once all of the tax had been taken out.
Manuel Franco said that he was not sure exactly what he plans to do with all of his millions, but that he feels it is essential to help out people all over the world with his riches so that he can bless others the same way that he had been blessed. He also paid for a member of his family's college tuition.
"I'm sure you'll never see me as one of the people who went bankrupt or broke or anything like that. I plan to live my life normal as much as possible," he said.
Manuel Franco said that he has been playing US Powerball since his 18th birthday (when it is legal to start playing). After winning, he said that he would probably play the lottery again once the initial buzz of being a new millionaire has worn off.
"I can't believe an ordinary guy like me would ever be in this position. As a winner now, [...], I will say that a roughly $4 entry that you purchase is worth the chance to change your life forever. It certainly has changed my life, and I look forward to the future!" was his closing statement to reporters.
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