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NC Powerball winner: 'I was jumping up and down'

Posted February 23, 2015

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— A Brunswick County woman who was one of three people who matched all six numbers in the $564.1 million Powerball jackpot drawing on Feb. 11 was in Raleigh Monday afternoon to discuss her giant prize and take questions from the media.

"I scared my kids, because I was jumping up and down," said Marie Holmes, a 26-year-old single mother of four who won $188 million of the prize. "I'm still processing it. It's not hit me yet."

The winning ticket was sold at Scotchman, a Shallote convenience store.

"It’s not going to change the person that I am, but it is going to change our situation," Holmes said, adding that she now has a financial advisor and a person with her at all times to keep her safe.

Holmes opted to take a lump sum of $127 million instead of the $188 million, which would have been paid to her through yearly payments. After taxes, she went home with $88 million.

Holmes said she plans to use the money for her children's education, to travel and to donate to a church and charities. She also hopes to continue her own education in the nursing field.

"I'm definitely moving," she said. "I always wanted to travel, so I'm going to explore my options."

Two other winning tickets purchased in Puerto Rico and Texas also matched all of the numbers in the drawing.

The jackpot was the third largest in Powerball history and the fifth-largest U.S. lottery prize. The last time a Powerball jackpot climbed so high was May 2013 when a Florida ticket won a $590.5 million prize.

The largest payout in U.S. history was to three ticket holders in the Mega Millions game, the other national lottery drawing. That was a $656 million prize won in March 2012 by players in Kansas, Illinois and Maryland.

18 Comments

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  • Yolanda Clay Feb 24, 2015
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    Congratulations to this young lady! hiring a financial advisor is a smart start in managing her new life. It doesn't matter the opinion of others, however, try not to let your jealousy show with snide comments. How about we just be happy for her, and wish her the best?

  • Montel Burnette Feb 23, 2015
    user avatar

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    So what is wrong with her getting the benefits from the government that she paid for with her taxes while she was out of work and taking care of her kids? Maybe she didn't have anyone to keep her kids while she worked and she was doing that only for them to get old enough for her to leave them home alone while she worked and provided for them?

  • Beth Pearce Feb 23, 2015
    user avatar

    She bought 5 tickets and in that first batch was the winning number (she didn't know it yet) and she sent her mother to go buy 5 more. Smart lady. Sometimes people think that those who win the lottery "change." I don't think so. I think the folks who didn't win, change! Any amount of money can be gone through fast, but hopefully she'll be careful and have enough to live off of. Good for her!

  • Kaitlyn Legare Feb 23, 2015
    user avatar

    What a nice story! I think she should get out of her place in Shallotte and buy up a chunk of Bald Head Island to open up a resort for special needs children. I'm sure the locals would would love that :)

  • Sharon Davis Feb 23, 2015
    user avatar

    i hope she doesn't let it go to her head. it would be interesting to follow her life now that she is a celebrity. i would like to see her in 10 years to see how she fared.

  • Craig Wade Feb 23, 2015
    user avatar

    The person at the podium pronouced the winners name as "Hums". Was this a mistake on her part or is that the way the winner prefers?
    Irregardless, good luck to the winner.

  • Dan May Feb 23, 2015
    user avatar

    Coe happened to a better winner. Here is a young attractive woman who needs a break in life. Her children and her extended family will all benefit from $188MMI'm glad to see it. Good luck and manage it well.

  • Doug Bradley Feb 23, 2015
    user avatar

    With all those relatives that showed up with her today, I have a feeling this isn't gonna go well.

  • William Tatum Feb 23, 2015
    user avatar

    Brings to mind The Pearl by John Steinbeck.

  • Keith Hayes Feb 23, 2015
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    So if she had quit her job or jobs... and she was as you said not living off the system, where was she getting her money from, prior to this of course.

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